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Full text of "The Gael and Cymbri : or, An inquiry into the origin and history of the Irish Scoti, Britons, and Gauls, and of the Caledonians, Picts, Welsh, Cornish, and Bretons"

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Page. Line. 

25 4 for 12th, read 16th, 

31 7 for where, read were. 

37 note ejutate, read ejulate. 

62 6 dele people. 

77 7 for importance, read authority. 

78 22 for because its, read aw</ A/*. 

79 13 for AM**, read exists. 

84 7 for settlement, read settlements. 

85 8 for namely, read merely. 
92 9 for claims, read chains. 
98 11 for were, read was. 

] 09 note for tee*, read tafo, and name, read names. 

140 19 for different, read differ unt. 

144 2 for annuum, read annuus. 

157 6 for /ays, read /zes. 

218 16 for ofc, read 6attfe. 

219 5 for formed, read found. 
222 18 for Maw, read with. 
287 13 for Britain, read Briton. 
287 19 for r#0K, read Britain. 
365 16 for was, read i*. 

380 note for Nobitia, read Notitia. 

382 1 1 note for coporis, read corporis. 

384 1 for spoke, read spoken. 

392 7 dele comma after Cimbric. 

394 8 for exhibit, read exhibits. 

398 5 for Agricola, read Agricola. 

430 4 for M, read *A?y. 

43C 3 for a/u/ wo^, read z/ >tf. 



I have the honour to inscribe to your most 
gracious Majesty, this attempt to place on its 
true basis, the history of the early inhabitants 
of the British Islands ; which, I trust, will be 
found not altogether unworthy your Majesty's 
royal favour and patronage. 

With the most humble, grateful, and duti- 
ful respect, I have the honour to subscribe 

Your Majesty's most devoted 
Servant and Subject, 


Ulster King of Arms. 


THE family of the human race from which the 
Milesian Irish derive their descent, and the period 
of their settlement in Ireland, has been, hitherto, 
a much disputed, but unsettled question. The 
native authorities, indeed, derive them from 
Spain, and call them Scoti, or Scuits, but it is 
still left doubtful who these Scoti were, as no 
such people are mentioned by the antient writers 
as inhabiting Spain ; and the authority of the 
Irish MSS. and traditions has been altogether re- 
jected by some, and held as very questionable 
authority, by most English writers, while the 


native historians have insisted on its verity with 
great warmth. On the one hand it will not be 
denied that the advocates for its truth, more 
zealous than judicious, have indulged in bold 
assertion and loose conjecture, fondly expecting 
the antient Irish MSS. and traditions, unsup- 
ported by external evidence, to be received as 
unquestionable testimony ; on the other, those 
evidences have been, without due examination, 
condemned as clumsy fictions, void of truth, 
probability, or foundation. 

The Irish story must, however, be considered as 
entitled to some respect from its antiquity. Both 
Nennius and Giraldus Cambrensis, give the out- 
line, much as it is found in Keating, the former 
states, that he had the relation from the most 
learned of the Scots ; it must, therefore, be at least 
of 1000 years' standing. 

Having been impressed with the idea, that 
the demonstration of the true origin and history 
of the Irish people, would afford powerful aid 
towards elucidating those of other European 
nations, I have pursued 'this investigation for 
many years, and the results have justified and 
substantiated the accuracy of the opinion I had 
formed beyond my most sanguine expectations. 


The examination of the language, laws, reli- 
gion, customs, and institutions of the people of 
Gaul, who were declared by Caesar, to have 
called themselves Celta3, was the first object of my 
attention, and the result of that investigation 
has established, it is conceived, beyond the pos- 
sibility of doubt or question, that the Irish, Bri- 
tons, and Gauls, of Caesar's day, all spoke the 
same language, had the same origin, religion, 
laws, institutions, and customs, and were, in fact, 
but different branches of the same people. Thus 
far one branch of the question has been, *I con- 
ceive, effectually answered the Scoti, or Irish, 
were Celtae. 

The other question still remained " WHEN 


not be answered without first solving the pro- 
blem of " WHO WERE THE CELT^ ?" It Was 

not sufficient to rest on the probability of their 
settling in the British islands from Gaul, al- 
though that alternative has hitherto been the der- 
nier resort, of most English writers, who, rejecting 
altogether the Milesian story as fabulous, have 
had no other way of accounting for the peopling 
of these islands, than in frail wicker coracles, co- 
vered with skins, from the nearest coast of the 


and whence were the Celtce ?" in- 
volved investigation into the history of all the 
antient people of Europe, but it was not long be- 
fore that question was also satisfactorily answered ; 
a strong affinity was palpable between the Celts 
and the Phenicians their language, religion, and 
institutions, not only appear to have been similar, 
but identical ; they not only traded with, but co- 
lonized Spain, the British Islands, and Celtic 
Gaul, expelling or extirpating the previous in- 
habitants, and planting therein their own people. 
Thus is the second question answered, and the 
long sought problem solved. 

Another question arose out of this investiga- 
tion, viz. were " the Welsh the antient Britons, 
who combated against Caesar, and, after the fall 
of the Roman province of Britain into, the hands 
of the Saxons, took refuge in Wales, and there 
maintained their independance, and handed down 
their language, laws, and institutions, to their 
descendants " 

I had always considered the affirmative of this 
proposition true, and, although a slight acquaint- 
ance with the Welsh language, led to the con- 
clusion that it varied essentially from the Gaelic, 
still it appeared but a variance, and I considered 


the two languages, in their origin, essentially 
the same. Finding, however, discrepancies and 
anomalies in the notion of the Welsh being the 
antient Britons, which appeared irreconcileable, 
I determined, in the first instance, to examine, 
more particularly, the construction of the Welsh 
language, and was surprised to find that it dif- 
fered totally from the Gaelic, and had not, in 
fact, the slightest affinity, unless it could be 
considered an affinity that a few words are to be 
found in each tongue, which have the same or si- 
milar meaning. 

Having thus ascertained that the Welsh and 
Gael must have been a totally distinct and se- 
parate people, and, therefore, that the ancestors of 
the Welsh could not have been the Britons, who 
fought with Csesar, as they were undoubtedly 
Gael, the question then arose " who were the 
Welsh, and when did they become possessed of 
Wales r 

Thus did another difficulty present itself, of no 
small magnitude, which, however, was eventually 
surmounted. Lhuyd and Rowland, two of the 
most eminent Welsh writers, had unwillingly 
been coerced into the opinion, that a people, 
who spoke the Irish language, were the pre- 


decessors of the Welsh in Wales, and gave 
names to most of the places in that country 
and all parts of England ; and that Welsh names 

of rivers and places, were only to be found in the 
r j 

eastern and southern parts of Scotland ; there- 
fore, it appears clear, that the Picts, who inha- 
bited that country, must have been the ancestors 

of the Welsh, and that they conquered Wales, 
t Cornwall, and Britanny, on the fall of the Ro- 
man empire ; and, calling themselves Cymbri, 
they were a colony of the Cimbri, a people who 
once inhabited the neighbouring coasts of Jut- 
tjs land, the antient Cimbric Chersonesus, the coun- 
try opposite the land of the Picts. 


Thus, is the origin and history of the 
Gael and Cymbri, placed on its true basis, and 
that is now in harmony, which, heretofore, was 
confused, anomalous, and contradictory. The 
j^ p false statements respecting the received history of 
the Welsh, had their origin in the fabrications of 
Geoffrey of Monmouth, in the early part of the 
twelfth century. Of the previous writers, Gil das 
I is totally inconsistent with Geoffrey's statement, 
and such parts of the book ascribed to Nennius, 
a were really written bv him, clearly support 
Gildas, and go to establish the fact, that the an- 
tient Britons were Gael. Indeed there is nothing 


against that idea but the contemptible fabrications 
of Geoffrey and the Welsh Triads, which are too 
palpable fictions to weigh as a feather in the ba- 

The earliest authorities derive the word Scot 
and Scoti, from Scyth, or Scythian. Nennius, 
who quotes the Irish writers, calls them Scoti, 
and Scothi, and brings them from Spain. By 
the Anglo-Saxon writers, they are generally called 
Scyts, and Scytisc. Pinkerton derives it from 
f-ceJte, dispersed, scattered. Chalmers, from 
Scuite, or fculte, a small body of men. Where 
was this interpretation found ? It is not Gaelic. 
Macpherson derives the same from Coit, a wood, 
(Welsh, Coed) coJc, is Gaelic for a boat, or 
coracle of wicker, covered with a skin. Mac- 
pherson gives feat, a ship. Vallancey sup- 
poses that Scoti and Scythi, must mean the same 

people, and endeavours to discover evidence to 
x x 

make the Irish, Indo- Scythians, conceiving that 
the word must have been derived from the coun- 
try, which they originally inhabited. The Irish 
fable, derives Scot from Scota, a daughter of 
one of the Pharaohs. The Gaelic word jrcuJte,- 
however, signifies a wanderer, a person of no- 
madic habits, perhaps every people of a rambling 
character were included under the name of Scy- 


thians, without reference to the country they in- 
habited, or the family of the human race from 
which they sprung. Thus, all the Tartar race, 
in the northern regions of Asia and Europe, 
and a great part of Germany, were styled 

The Irish, in latter times, were called by their 
neighbours, Scoti : they were denominated Hi- 
berni, by Eumenius, but his contemporary, Por- 
phry, speaks of the Scoticce Gentes, meaning the 
Scotish nations inhabiting Britain. The Roman 
writers, however, did not include the Scots of the 
British islands among the Scythian nations, but 
distinctly called them Scoti. Bede calls the Picts 
a Scythian nation, who were certainly from the 
north of Europe. 

The Gaelic Scuite, or wanderer, was a name 
the Phenicians, of all other nations, may be said 
to have appropriately merited. Their wander- 
ings were more extended than any other nation : 
they first passed the Pillars of Hercules, and 
launched into the bosom of the interminable ocean, 
as it was then considered ; in fact, it was they 
who gave it the name of ocean ; oJce, sea, ceotn, 
head, or chief. The chief sea. 

Scot, Scuite, and wanderer, is but a transla- 


tion of the name by which the Phenieians 
were known to the Greeks and the antients. 
Phenice is a wanderer by sea ; f eJn, a plough- 
man ; ojce, of the sea ; a mariner ; a wanderer 
by sea. They were called Phenieians, or Phenice, 
before they settled on the coasts of Tyre and 
Sidon. Herodotus tells us, they were called by 
the Arabians, Homer ita, a name which means 
the same thing as Phenice, in Greek, (see p. 42,) 
viz. navigators ; for Greek should be understood 
the Phenician word adopted by the Greeks, for 
the name, properly speaking, has no meaning in 
Greek, and the most absurd guesses have been 
ventured to explain it in Greek, none of which 
are at all feasible. >cub, is a Gaelic name for a 
ship ; and /-cab buJne, ship-man, the very mean- 
ing of the word Phenice ; a word also from the 
same root, as ^cuJte, from its wandering or tra- 
velling over the sea. These two words, or rather 
the compound word, is pronounced skiddeen, li- 
terally a ship-man, or mariner. 

It may be objected that the Britons and Gauls 
were Gael, as well as the Irish, and, therefore, 
why were they not also called Scoti, by the an- 
tient writers ? It is not to be expected that 
a negative can be proved ; they may origi- 
nally have been called Scots, and wanderers, 


and have ceased to be so denominated, when 
they acquired settled habits, before the Greeks 
and Romans were acquainted with them. The 
Irish, who were unquestionably called Scoti, 
by the lower Roman writers, and S cults, by 
the Anglo-Saxons, have long lost that name, 
which is now exclusively applied to the in- 
habitants of North Britain. /A highlander, how- 
ever, the genuine descendant of the Albanian 
Scoti, will not at this day call himself a Scot ; if 
asked his country in his own tongue, he will 
answer either that he is Albanach, or Gael. 
He will never think of saying I am Scot. We 
have, therefore, two strong facts to account for 
the disuse of such a term by the British and 
Gaulish Gael. 

Although the foregoing derivation certainly is 
probable, there is another which appears very 
likely to be the modern origin of the name. The 
name Scot was not heard of until about the .de- 
cline of the Roman empire, and may, therefore, 
have been applied, for the first time, to the 
hordes of wandering predatory Irish, who in- 
fested the western coasts of Britain. It should 
also be remembered that the Britons spoke Gaelic, 
and would naturally call the roaming pirates 
Scuite, which afterward was applied to the Irish 


nation generally, and was eventually adopted by 
the Albanian Scots themselves. Their country, na- 
turally, received the name of Skuytland from the 

It has been my object to adduce evidence, per- 
fectly free from even the suspicion of Irish pre- 
dilection or bias ; it will be found that few 
Irish authorities have been quoted, except the 
Gaelic language itself. Even for the Irish his- 
tory, the account given by Nennius and Giraldus 
Cambrensis, have been preferred to Irish MSS. 
or Keating's history, although it should be 
admitted, in candour and fairness to that learned 
writer, that his real history, in the original, is 
very superior to the spurious English trans- 
lation, published by Dermot O'Connor. The 
Milesian story, however, will eventually be 
found grounded in truth ; and, although but a 
faint and imperfect sketch, it is the true history 
of the first settlement of the Celtse in Europe. 

The following pages are now laid before the 
critical and intelligent, with no small portion of 
anxiety ; they appear to me to demonstrate, that 
antient colonies of Phenicians settled in Spain, 
Ireland, Britain, and Gaul, long before the 
Christian era, and that they called themselves 


Gael, and Gaeltach, or Celta?, and that the Irish, 
the Gael of Scotland, and the Manks, are now 
the only descendants of that antient people 
who speak their language. 

I have endeavoured to place the subject in a 
clear and perspicuous light, and leave it now 
to the decision of competent judges, fully aware 
that received opinions of history, and national 
prejudices, are very difficult to be removed, or 
even shaken ; but feeling strongly impressed with 
the truth of my statements and deductions, I 
venture to launch my little vessel, inviting, rather 
than deprecating criticism my object being 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the 

There is one point, however, on which some 
allowance and indulgence may be expected, that 
is, in the numerous names of rivers and places, 
which have been collated, some may have been 
mistaken, but the definitions given, will, it is 
conceived, generally be found correct. The 
names of places of which I have personal know- 
ledge, are so palpably descriptive, that I feel 
little apprehension for the accuracy of those I am 
unacquainted with. 

If these names be correctly explained, what an 


important and valuable addition they make to 
geographical knowledge, and what new lights do 
they throw on antient history ? The attempts of 
the most learned and intelligent historians, 
to explain the names of places, have not been 
founded on the language which those who con- 
ferred the names spoke, and, therefore, were 
erroneous and delusive. 

The English critic now possesses ample and 
efficient means of investigating these etymo- 
logies, as no less than four good dictionaries 
of the Gaelic language have issued from the 
press, within a few years ; that is to say, the 
Irish and English Dictionary, by Edward 
O'Reilly ; a new edition of O'Brien's Irish and 
English Dictionary, which contains much valu- 
able topographical information ; Armstrong's 
Scotish Gaelic Dictionary ; and, lastly, the splen- 
did work published under the auspices of the 
Highland Society of Scotland, the most copious 
and enlarged of all. These works will assist the 
critic and the scholar to examine much more 
satisfactorily than formerly, and to them an 
appeal is made with confidence. 

Antient history has been obscured, rather than 
elucidated, by the Greek and Roman writers, 


who have endeavoured to weave into their own 
story the incidents of the history of the Phe- 
nicians ; and both those nations, apparently, 
endeavoured to destroy the records of the 
people to whom they were indebted for their 
literature and primary elements of civilization. 

The Phenician language has been, for two 
thousand years, unknown, that is, with any cer- 
tainty ; at all events, so imperfectly understood, 
that all attempts to explain even the shortest in- 
scription, found upon coins, medals, or marbles, 
have been but vague and uncertain guesses. 
Spanhiem, Bochart, and Gebelen, have endea- 
voured to render them intelligible through the 
Hebrew, but their attempts have been abortive, 
or very imperfectly successful ; though kindred 
tongues, the affinity of the Hebrew with the 
Phenician is too distant to be useful for such a 
purpose. The Phenicians, although co-descend- 
ants of Shem, through Eber, with the Jews, had 
so much intercourse with other nations, that their 
language became very much mixed and changed, 
while the Hebrew remained stationary and pure. 

The discovery that in the Irish a people 
still exist who speak the language of the Pheni- 
cians, is of the first historical importance, for 


by it Phenician inscriptions may be decyphered, 
and the extent of their commerce and navigation 
traced by the antient names of places in the world 
known to the antients. 

The Irish character has been used in this work 
to express the Gaelic words, because the Scottish 
method of using an h instead of a point, to 
eclipse or render mute the preceding consonant, 
gives an uncouth and awkward appearance to the 
word itself, and would render it unpronounceable, 
according to the power of that letter in any 
other language. An alphabet of the Irish let- 
ters, and a brief explanation of the power of 
the points, is, therefore, given. 

The alphabet consists of the following seven- 
teen letters : 

abcdefgilmnoprs tu. 

c b g, having a point over, render them 

b and m change their power to v consonant. 

r) signifies that the letter is doubled, and is the 
same as 7727. 

2& 4. -U <****?' "^ *'* 

SC4/lv*'< ~C****c / , 

**/*& ^^ 


These few observations are sufficient to explain 
the sound of the Irish words used in the follow- 
ing essay. The only letters which differ much 
from the Roman are b d, p f, 5 g, /i r, f s, and 
t t, but even in these the variation is so very 
slight, that the knowledge of them will be easily 

;/*eH. ** J4 

/ * / *^ > . X 

CbC :ft?^*'- 

. Ak 4* <n*d~faf 

4**+<**W A4ft^ 

/&> <*#*l^p++*M 

*/* **.* ^ir*-^ p.' **'^* 

' r *C*\G <+frrL #&.*.# +** &+*&*& 

fatoiifarf *fa**t SMK./> 4'^'fM ft 

/; t/iisr*Vofy * 

* 4*6*. ( 

e***rt4*+>. +*? S***>*+ *,***% o ' 

WM ^n*4 ^-- ; ^^T f 

> &* 

it &**& 

#i* f. 

* * 

. r t ,>x? ^ * 

r?> f* & ^<dht*4 

+4*+t- f' 


.</** ^ ^ -.,4-/P*- J 

***** ^ >#;f ^* ' 

-*/ #^w" /&*-- 




The subject warmly discussed, but still undecided Who un- 
questionable CeltcR Who not Who styled Celtce by the An- 
tients Casar Tacitus Errors of Modern Writers To- 
land Dialects of the Celtce Irish, Erse, and Manks of the 
Cimbric Welsh, Cornish, Armorican Bishop of Dromore 
Doubts whether the Welsh, Cornish, and Armorican are 
of same origin as the Irish Bishop's pedigree of the Celtic 
includes the Welsh Erroneous Corrected pedigree Pe- 
digree of the Gothic Pedigree of the Cimbri Vallancey 
Danger of Etymology Scoti Sir James Ware and 
other English writers of the British Islands not peopled 
from the Continent Why by a maritime people Tacitus 
Amber CcRsar Herodotus Tyrians. 

THERE are few subjects of history which have 
excited such tedious, lengthened, and bitter 
controversy as the history of the Celts. The 
disputants often waxed so warm, that they lost 


sight of their subject in the indulgence of their 
animosity. Many elaborate and learned books 
have been written, but the subject is at this mo- 
ment as open for discussion and unsettled, 
as if it had never been agitated. There is 
scarcely a people in Western Europe, who have 
not, upon slight grounds, been declared Celtic ; 
in short, the writers who have undertaken to en- 
lighten the world, on the subject, evidently had 
not satisfied themselves. 

As the term Celtae has hitherto been so un- 
certain, it is necessary to define and specify what 
is here meant by the Celtce^ in order that we 
may arrive at something like a rational and logi- 
cal conclusion, and avoid wasting time in useless 
discussions. Our criteria, therefore, are 

First That the inhabitants of Celtic Gaul, 
of Caesar's day, being undoubted Celtse, every 
nation who spoke the same language, and had the 
same religion, manners, and institutions, as that 
people, were also Celts. 

Secondly That if we can discover a more 
antient people, who spoke the same language, 
professed the same religion, and had the same 


manners and institutions of the Celtae of Gaul, 
that must have been the nation from whom the 
Celts descended. 

Thirdly That any people whose language dif- 
fers in construction, and whose religion, man- 
ners and institutions have nothing common or ho- 
mogeneous with the Celtse of Gaul, cannot be 
Celts ; and that the words found in the language 
of such a nation, having a similar sound and 
meaning as some in the Celtic, and having a 
Celtic root, must be concluded to have been 
borrowed from the latter during a long inter- 
course and neighbourhood, but are no proofs of 
a common origin. 

These are the tests which will hereafter be ap- 
plied ; from which it is hoped, the deductions, 
results, and conclusions, may be satisfactory to 
the unprejudiced reader. 

The antient writers included under the name 
of Celts, all the inhabitants of the western 
shores of Europe. Herodotus, says the ex- 
treme west is inhabited by the Celtse, and 
declares, that Spain, Britain, and greater 
part of Gaul, was under the dominion of 
the Celtcc. But the most valuable authority is 



Csesar, whose conquest of Gaul, and invasion of 
Britain, gave him better opportunities of knowing 
their true position than previous writers. He 
supplies us with lights, without which we should 
scarcely be able to dissipate the cloud hanging 
over the manners, customs, religion, and learn- 
ing of those early times, or form any correct 
idea of the institutions of the early inhabitants 
of these countries. Of their origin he appears 
to have been ignorant, and Tacitus tells us it was 
hid in the mists of antiquity. 

We are enabled, from Csesar, to place within 
defined limits the country of the Celtse, and thus 
we divest the subject of much difficulty. Part of 
Spain, Celtic Gaul, and the British islands were 
the limits of Celtica Proper. Cluverius, in his 
Germania Antiqua, Pelloutier, in his Histoire 
des Celtes, Larcher, in his Geographic d'He- 
rodote, and others, by including the antient 
Germans, and the northern kingdoms of Den- 
mark, Sweden, and Norway, among the Celtse, 
have been led into confusion and endless contra- 
dictions. The Germans were Goths, Teutons, 
or Cimbri, not Celts ; their language totally 
differed from the Celtic in construction. None 
of those learned writers appear to have had the 
slightest idea of the Celtic tongue ; Pelloutier 


acknowledges his ignorance. Caesar distinctly re- 
lates that the language of the Germans was quite 
different from that of the Gauls, and speaks of 
Ariovistus, the German king, having learned the 
latter with difficulty ; while both he and Tacitus 
testify that the inhabitants of the British isles and 
the Gauls were same people and spoke the same 
language, " Sermo hand multum diver sus"* 

But it is scarcely necessary to contest the erro- 
neous notion of Cluverius, Keysler, Larch er, 
Pelloutier, and others, that the antient Germans 
and Celtse were originally people of the same 
stock. Mr. Toland, and after him the vene- 
rable Dr. Percy, bishop of Dromore, in the 
preface to his translation of Malet's Northern 
Antiquities, by a comparison of the languages 
of the antient nations of Europe, clearly de- 
monstrated the error into which those learned 
men had fallen. But, as the last-named able 
writers did not see, and, consequently, have 
not removed, all the error in which the subject 
is involved, it is necessary to reiterate some 
of their arguments, and to point out the dis- 
crepancies .which still embarrass the subject, by 

* Tacitus in Vita Agricola, c. 11. 


shewing that they ought also to have separated 
the Welsh, Cornish, and Armoriean from the 

Mr. Toland in the first of his Letters to Lord 
Molesworth, on the Druids, which are generally 
dignified with the title of the " History of the 
Druids," for the first time, I believe, made a dis- 
tinction between the Celtic and the Gothic 

" The Celtic dialects," says he, " which are 
now principally six, namely, the Welsh, or in- 
sular British Cornish , almost extinct Armo- 
rican, or French British Irish, the least cor- 
rupted Manks, the language of the Isle of 
Man and Earse, or Highland Irish, spoken 
also in the western islands of Scotland. These 
having severally their own dialects, are, with res- 
pect to each other, and the old Celtic of Gaul, 
as the several dialects of the German language 
and Low Dutch, the Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, 
and Icelandic, which are all descendants of their 
common mother the Gothic. Not that ever such 
a thing as a pure Gothic or Celtic language 
either did or could exist, in any considerable 
region, without dialects, no more than pure ele- 
ments ; but by such an original language is meant 


the common root or trunk, the primitive words, 
and especially the peculiar construction that runs 
through all the branches, whereby they are in- 
telligible to each other, or may easily become so, 
but different from all kinds of speech besides. 
Thus the Celtic and the Gothic, which have often 
been taken for each other, are as different as the 
Latin and the Arabic." 

This argument was improved upon by the 
bishop of Dromore, who, although fully sensible 
of the great difference between the Welsh and 
Irish, says : 

" In conformity to the opinion of the most 

knowing antiquaries I have given the Irish and 
Erse tongues as descended from one common 
origin with the Cambrian, or antient British lan- 
guage, viz : the Welsh, Armoric, and Cornish. 
But, to confess my own opinion, / cannot think 
they are equally derived from one common 
Celtic stock, at least not in the same uniform 
manner as any two branches of the Gothic ; 
such, for instance, as the Anglo-Saxon, and the 
Francic, from the old Teutonic. Upon com- 
paring the two antient specimens given above 
in page xix, scarce any resemblance appears 
between them ; so that if the learned will have 


them to be streams from one common fountain, 
it must be allowed, that one or both of them 
have been greatly polluted in their course, and 
received large inlets from some other channel."* 
Thus allowing- his acquiescence in, and deference 
to, the opinion of the most knowing antiquaries 
to get the better of his judgment. His knowledge 
of the Welsh and Irish being confined to the 
copies of the pater noster he quotes, he, per- 
haps, felt unwilling to set up his single judgment 
in a subject of so much difficulty. 

The bishop gives the following genealogical 
tables of the Celtic and Gothic tribes : 

The Celtic 


3. The antient 

1. The antient 2. The antient 
Gauls. British. 

1. | 2. | 3. | i. I 
Welsh. Armoric Cornish. Irish. 

2. | 3. | 

Erse. Manks. 

* Preface to Malet's Northern Antiquities, xxvii. 



This pedigree of the Celtse must not be 
allowed to stand unquestioned ; for Toland had 
grafted on the stock a scion of a different genus, 
of which the bishop doubted the genuine cha- 
racter, and unwillingly allowed to remain, by 
making the Welsh, Armoric, and Cornish, 
descend from the antient Britons. This in- 
vestigation will prove the bishop to have been 
right ; for these people will be found to be of 
German origin, and the descendants of the Cim- 
bri, who were not a Celtic nation, as will appear 
clearly and satisfactorily hereafter. The corrected 
pedigree will stand thus : 

The Celts, a Phenician colony 

The antient 
Gauls and 
with the 

The antient 
with the 

The a 


3 h, 



1. Irish. 

2. Erse. 

3. Mt 


The bishop's pedigree of the Gothic nations. 

Teutonj, or Goths, 
A German people. 

] . Old Saxon 
or Anglo- 


2. Francic Icel 
or Franco- 



H- tt> CO j^ 

< ^ QO3 

II 1 1 

To the Teutons, or Goths, perhaps, might be 
added the Belgse, who are believed to have been 
a Gothic people. 

It would be erroneous to call the Icelandic 
Cimbric, if it be meant to convey the idea that 
it was the language of those Cimbri, who, with the 
Teutons, invaded Gaul and the Roman pro- 
vinces in the time of Marius j therefore we give 
the Cimbri a separate pedigree. The construction 
of their language has a stronger affinity to the 
Gothic than the Celtic, still it is very different 


from either, as in the case of the Finnish and 

The following additional pedigree is necessary 
to the right understanding the subject : 

The Cimbri, a nation from the north of 
Europe, who inhabited Jutland, or 
the Cimbric Chersonesus. 

The Caledonian Cymbri, The Cimbri, who invad- 

who peopled the British Is- ed Gaul, and were destroyed 

lands, afterwards called by Marius. A. A. c. 103. 

The Welsh. Cornish. Armoricans, 

or Bretons. 

Hereafter will be given the arguments in sup- 
port of this last pedigree. 

The Irish were allowed, on all hands, to have 
been a Celtic people, until Vallancey declared 
them to be Indo- Scythians. Of General Val- 
lancey I cannot speak with too much respect ; 
his labours in Celtic investigation were, beyond 
any other, intense and unremitted : the immense 
mass of etymological facts he accumulated are 
valuable ; and if his conclusions were erroneous 
it was chiefly when he relied on doubtful 
authors and etymologies. His ardent and intel- 


ligent mind saw those affinities between the Irish 
and the oriental languages which no one can 
deny, and which recent discoveries and investiga- 
tions have rendered obvious, but the unfortu- 
nate hypothesis which he adopted, that the Irish 
were not Celts, led him to endeavour to seek 
arguments to support that cherished opinion. 

The Lord's Prayer, in the alleged language 
of the Waldenses, which Chamberlayne published 
in 1700, is a strong instance of his being led 
away by false lights, and produced a long chap- 
ter. What Chamberlayne published as Walden- 
sic 9 has since been ascertained to bear no re- 
semblance whatever to the true language of that 
interesting people, although it is unquestionably 

There is something very bewitching in etymo- 
logy. Having read Vallancey, an unbiassed 
mind is compelled to acknowledge the force of 
many of his deductions but still is not often 
convinced of their accuracy. The strong si- 
milarity of the names of the Irish heroes and 
deities with those of the east ; and their having 
the same, or very similar, attributes, often bear- 
ing two or three names, all equally common 
and germane to these tongues, are striking and, 
apparently, unanswerable facts, to show a com- 


mon origin, and would seem to establish the given 
hypothesis ; but a close reasoner will look more 
into the detail. The General tells you the Hin- 
doos borrowed much, if not the greater part, of 
their mythology from the Chaldeans ; so did the 
Phenicians and antient Arabians, therefore, 
it does not follow that the Irish must be Indo- 
Scythians, because they have a community in 
some parts of their mythology with the Brahmins. 
The Phenicians having first traded with Ireland, 
may have colonized it, which is a more natural 
way of accounting for the existence of the 
Chaldean mythology in Ireland, than bringing 
a colony of Indo- Scythians to that country. 
Dr. Vincent, on very strong grounds, doubts 
that such a people as the Indo-Scythians ever 
existed. Certainly, the most extraordinary 
postulate of the General was, that the Irish na- 
tion were not Celts. He says : 

" To all these oriental words, and terms of ex- 
pression, the Celtic nations were strangers ; and, 
in my humble opinion, they are strong corrobo- 
rating proofs that the ancient Irish were de- 
scended of the Indo-Scythians, Bologues, Oma- 
nites, and Dedanites of Chaldea, as their history 
sets forth. 

" And yet there are some English authors, 


and modern ones, of great learning 1 , in other re- 
spects, who will, right or wrong, make the Irish 
a Celtic nation, and derive both the Irish and 
Welsh from the antient Britons"* 

The General knew well there was little affinity 
between the Welsh and Irish languages, and 
that one or other of them was not Celtic. This 
is a fact which the most superficial investigation 
of the two cannot fail to demonstrate ; there are, 
certainly, some words to be found in the former 
which are also Irish, but they are, evidently, bor- 
rowed by the Welsh, who succeeded the Gael in 
the possession of Wales. The mistake of the 
General was, taking it for granted that the Welsh 
and its dialects were the same as the language 
of Gaul and Britain in the times of Caesar, 
and the Roman sway in Britain. He saw that 
one or other was not Celtic ; and having fixed 
on the erroneous alternative, and declared the 
Irish not to be Celts, immediately set about the 
discovery of a new origin for them in the 
delta of the Indus, where, the mythology of the 
people having had a common origin with that of 

* Essay on the Primitive Inhabitants of Great Britain 
and Ireland, 1807, p. 605. 


the Phenicians, he found abundant materials to 
encourage his pursuit. 

It is very remarkable how blinded the most 
intelligent men become when they unfortu- 
nately adopt an erroneous hypothesis. Val- 
lancey knew the Irish called themselves Gael, 
or Gauls, yet he declares them not to be Celtce, 
and gives us a long etymological disquisition on 
the name in Hebrew, Arabic, and Persian ; first 
Gaodhal, to prove them descendants of Japhet, 
who in Scripture is styled Gadul. Gaodhal is 
pronounced Gael. Secondly, he takes the sound, 
or pronunciation Gael, and derives it from 
Gcelibh, tribes of merchants . In Arabic, glieli, 
negotium magnum, geJUo^, geilios, traffic, com- 
merce. The latter is more likely to be the origin 
of the name, as the Irish were a colony of Phe- 
nicians who were the great merchants of antiquity. 
The Scots were also all merchants by profession. 


One ScuJ 
" The Scottish race are all inclined to trade." 

Had the General, before he set out on his voy- 
age for the discovery of a new origin for the 
Irish, but recollected his former writings, in which 
he endeavoured to identify the Irish and Pheni- 


cian tongues, and examined the Welsh as well as 
the Irish, he would soon have discovered that the 
pretensions of the former to be Celts, were not 
tenable : and then his former discoveries would 
have come to his aid ; and saved him many labo- 
rious, but amusing, and to him no doubt delight- 
ful, investigations. 

Although the General did not establish the fa- 
vourite hypothesis of his advanced age ; yet the 
results of his labours are an invaluable magazine 
of materials of which a critical and judicious wri- 
ter may avail himself with great profit and ad- 

Sir James Ware, and most if not all English 
writers, advocate the position that the first peo- 
pling of Britain was from Gaul, and of Ireland 
from Britain ; because it is most probable con- 
jecture. Sir James says : " But as to the first 
inhabitants of Ireland, their opinions seem most 
satisfactory to me, who bring them from Britain, 
as being the most probable conjecture, as well 
on account of the near neighbourhood of Britain, 
from whence the passage is easy to Ireland, as 
from the language, rites, and customs of the an- 


tient Irish, between which and those of the an- 
tient Britons there is greater analogy."* 

If the Celtse were settled first in Ireland, and 
from thence passed over to Britain and Gaul, 
the analogy must have been equally striking, the 
inhabitants of each country having, in both cases, 
a common origin. Toland says, " I assign more 
immediately a British for the Irish, and an Irish 
extraction for the Scotch." The whole, how- 
ever, is given as a probable conjecture only, and 
with reference to the people found in possession, 
on the arrival of the Phenician Celtse, it is most 
likely true ; but with respect to the Celtse, the 
evidence of the antient Greek and Roman wri- 
ters, and the historical traditions of the Irish 
themselves, tend to show that the tide of emigra- 
tion flowed the other way, and that the British 
islands were first conquered and colonized by 
the Celtse, and subsequently Gaul was subjected 
to their yoke. 

Even so late as the time of Agricola, we learn 
from Tacitus that the ports of Ireland were more 
frequented by merchants than those of Britain 

* Ware's Antiquities. 


or Gaul, and, if so, this circumstance alone would 
suggest a probability, that the colonization of 
Ireland was by a mercantile nation, by means of 
ships. The Phenicians were adepts in the art of 
navigation at a very remote antiquity, and had 
ships of great burthen, capable of conveying nu- 
merous crews ; so remote, even, that the fact of 
the colonization, and even the intercourse, might, 
in Caesar's day, have ceased for so many centu- 
ries as to have been obliterated in the recollec- 
tion of the Britons and Gauls ; this will be made 
to appear very satisfactorily when we come to 
speak of the acts and history of that illustrious 

When the Phenician mariners had once ascer- 
tained the passage to, and position of, the British 
islands, they certainly could form settlements 
thereon for mercantile purposes, and afterwards 
send reinforcements to conquer and colonize 
their new acquisitions. As well might it be urged 
that it was more probable that Australia was peo- 
pled from China, than Britain. Give a people 
ships, and skill to, navigate them, and the sea is 
not an obstacle to but a means of colonization. 
Neither is the small area of the mother country 
an argument against colonization on a large 


scale the colonies of England at present exceed 
by many millions her domestic population. 

But there are stronger arguments for the pro- 
bability of the colonization of Ireland from sea- 
ward : the Celtae possessed Spain, and the an- 
tient people, the islands, rocks, headlands, ri- 
vers, and estuaries thereof, had Celtic names. 
The position of the British islands, on the map, 
shows that the Tyrians, or Phenicians, would 
make them in their coasting voyages, following 
the current, passing the coast of Gaul, from the 
Garonne to the Seine, at a great distance, the 
very country in which we find the Celtae. The 
nearest part of Celtic Gaul to Britain, is Cape 
la Hogue, nearly three times the distance of Ca- 
lais from Dover. Calais, was in Belgic Gaul, 
which comprised all the country from the Seine 
to the Rhine, and we know that the Belgae dif- 
fered from the Celtae, of Gaul and Britain, in 
language, manners, religion, and laws ; if the 
Britons had come from the nearest part of Gaul 
they would have been Belgae, not Celts, of whom 
Caesar tells us a few were settled on the coast 
of Britain. 

The probabilities, therefore, are rather against 
the Celtse coming from the continent to Britain j 


but we do not rest on the uncertain data of pro- 
bability, evidence will be brought forward which 
will, it is conceived, demonstrate the fact of the 
conquest and colonization of Celtica by the Phe- 

Tacitus distinctly states it as the opinion of 
his day, that the first settlers migrated to Celtic 
Europe in ships. " The Germans," he says, 
" there is reason to think are an indigenous race 
and the original natives of the country, without 
any admixture of adventitious settlers from other 
nations. In the early ages of the world the ad- 
venturers who issued forth in quest of new habi- 
tations, did not traverse extensive tracts of land, 
the first migrations were made by sea in ships. 
Even at this day the northern ocean, always ini- 
mical to navigation, is seldom traversed by ships 
from our parts of the world."* 

We learn also from Tacitus that some of the 
tribes of Germany were of Celtic origin and set- 

* "Ipsos Germanos indigenas crediderim minime que ali- 
arum gentium adventibus et hospitiis mixtos : quia nee terra 
olim sed classibus advehebantur, qui mutare sedes quaere- 
bant. Et immensus ultra, utque sic dixerim adversus oceanus 
raris ab orbe nostro navibus aditur." Tacitus de Moribus 


tied in that country in consequence of their pro- 
pensity for commerce and mining. 

" The Gothinians," he says, " of Germany, 
whose country joined Bohemia on the east, 
spoke the Gallic tongue, and submitted to the 
drudgery of working the mines." Again, " on the 
coast to the right of the Suevian ocean the JEsty- 
ans have fixed their habitation; in their dress 
and manner they resemble the Suevians, but 
their language has more affinity to the dialect of 
Britain," " they worship the mother of the gods." 
" In the cultivation of corn, and other fruits of the 
earth, they labour with more patience than is con- 
sistent with the natural laziness of the Germans. 
Their industry is excited in another instance ; 
they explore the sea for amber, in their language 
called Glese, and are the only people who gather 
that curious substance."* 

This word Glese is Celtic, it is gUJf , the 

genitive of gt<x/~, the sea, so called from its 
green colour. Amber was so called as a produc- ^ 
tion of the sea. Here we find the commercial 
people among the barbarians, and the only word 
handed down of their language is Gaelic. 

* Tacitus de Morib. Germ. xlv. 


Caesar says the chief god of the Celtse was 
Mercury, on account of his being the patron of 
merchandize and trade, in other words, that the 
propensities of that people were commercial, a 
strong ground for presuming them to have been 
a colony of the Phenicians, the great trading 
people of antiquity. 

There is indeed no other way of accounting 
for the beautiful specimens of elaborate workman- 
ship in gold, silver, copper, and bronze, which 
are every day found in such abundance in the 
bogs of Ireland, if we deny that the ancient Cel- 
tse were a colony of a people considerably ad- 
vanced in civilization ; and the united testimony 
of antient writers, as well as the names of places 
and the tradition of the Irish themselves, all con- 
cur to establish that that people were the Pheni- 

We have no certain history of the period when 
the Celtse first fixed their residence in Europe. 
Herodotus was acquainted with the fact of the 
Phenicians having traded to certain islands, be- 
yond the pillars of Hercules, for tin. Diodorus 
Siculus, Pliny, Strabo, and Plutarch, knew little 
more. The most antient of the Greek writers say 
that Hercules, (that is the Tyrians) sailed beyond 


the pillars of Hercules, and subdued the giants, 
Albion and Bergion, among the Celtse, i. e. con- 
quered those islands ; and Aristotle says the Phe- 
nicians formed settlements in the British islands. 
From all which, and the affinity of the Irish and 
Phenician languages, and the remains constantly 
found in Ireland, we can scarcely err in con- 
cluding the Celtse to have been a very early Phe- 
nician colony who, like their modern imitators, as 
before suggested, first formed settlements in Spain, 
Ireland, Britain, and Gaul, for commercial pur- 
poses, and afterwards sent military expeditions 
to conquer and secure their colonies. That the 
Tyriaiis were quite competent to such an under- 
taking will appear in our next chapter. This is 
concluded with an extract from the singularly 
laborious and learned work, I regret to add, of 
the late Godfrey Higgins, whose learning and in- 
genuity were equal to his eccentricity. 

Ch. II. 39. " The Irish claim to have been 
colonies from Phoenicia, but it is affirmed that 
there is no ancient evidence, except in the Irish 
records, that the Phoenicians ever made any set- 
tlements in Ireland. This really amounts to no 
objection, when it is to be considered that all the 
records of the Sidonians and Tyrians, have long 
since disappeared from natural causes ; that those 


of the Carthaginians were destroyed by the Ro- 
mans ; and that afterwards, Patrick, or the monks, 
followed and destroyed all they could lay their 
hands on ; but the assertion is not quite correct. 

"Gorjonides, in his book De Hannibale, says, 
that Hannibal conquered the Britons, who dwelt 
in the islands of the ocean. 

" Selden was of opinion that our islands were 
the fortunate islands of the Greeks. Isaac Tzetzes, 
who cannot be supposed to have any Irish prejudice, 
or esprit du corps, says ; "In oceano insula ilia 
Britannia, inter Britanniam illam quse sita est in 
occidente et Thylen quse adorientemmagisvergit." 
Justus Lipsius, quotes the following passage from 
Aristotle : In inari extra lierculis columnas, 
insulam desertam inventam fuisse, silva nemoro- 
eam, fluviis navigabilem, fructibus uberem, mul- 
torum dierum navigatione distantem, in quam 
crebro Carthaginienses commearint, et multisedes 
etiam fixerunt ; sed veritos primores ne minis loci 
illius opes convalescerent, et Carthaginis laberen- 
tur, edicto cavisse et poena capitis sanxisse, nequis 
eo navigasse deinceps vellet,"* 

Arist. in admirandis. 


" Lipsius then expresses his opinion that this 
cannot apply to the Canaries, but to the British 
islands only ; and in this I quite concur with Lip- 
sius, who lived in the 12th century, in Germany, 
and therefore cannot be supposed to have been 
infected by Colonel Vallancey. The question of 
the antiquity of Ireland has not perhaps been ju- 
diciously managed ; Colonel Vallancey, and 
others, have attempted a great deal too much, 
and seem to have begun at the wrong end. They 
ought first to have endeavoured to show by ex- 
ternal Greek and Roman evidence, like that from 
Aristotle given above, that there had been some 
communication or settlement of the Phoenicians 
made in the country. This expedition from Car- 
thage is said to have been commanded by Han- 
nibal ; that very name instantly, in the minds of 
most persons, will throw a degree of discredit on 
the story. It will immediately strike them that 
Hannibal must have had something else to do 
than to explore unknown countries; and thus 
the foolish, and in fact deceitful method of ren- 
dering the word, injures the object it meant to 
serve. Nobody can doubt that it was intended by 
the translator to mean the great Hannibal ; the 
mode of translation conveys that idea, when pro- 
bably the original means no such thing. Han- 
nibal was as common a name in Carthage as 


Walker or Wood in England. I think the quo- 
tation from Aristotle is enough, when combined 
with circumstances which have been noticed, to 
satisfy any person that there was a settlement of 
Carthaginians in Ireland, from whom many of 
their customs and antiquities may have been de- 
rived. It is not unlikely that this may have been 
the Milesian settlement of which so much has 
been said. It may have consisted in part, or in 
the whole, of Carthaginians from Spain, at that 
time under the yoke of Carthage. On the above 
passage of Aristotle's, Lipsius observes, " Quod 
verum censeo de una aliqua novarum insularum : 
quia multos dies navigatione impendet, neque 
probabile igitur Canarias aut alias vicinas fuisse. 
Noster Seneca nam ille Tragediae Medese certo 
est de iis ipsis preedixisse videtur, fecerit de- 

venient annis 

Ssecula seris, quibus oceanus 
Vincula rerum laxet, et ingens 
Pateat tellus, Tiphysque novos 
Deteget orbes, nee sit terris 
Ultima Thule. 

" A time will come, in ages now remote, when the 
vast barrier by the ocean formed, may yield a 
passage ; when new continents and other worlds, 
beyond the sea's expanse may be explored ; when 


Thule's distant shores may not be deemed the 
last resort of man." " Quid ille tamen proprie 
de Britannicis insulis intellexit, et in Claudii 
gratiam scripsit." J. Lipsius, vol. iv. p. 494. 

" The marks of the patriarchal people appear 
to be much stronger with the Irish than any 
other people of the British isles. This may have 
arisen naturally from some cause, which makes 
it stronger in the isles of Scotland, Tcolmkill, or 
Wales, than in England, their secluded situation 
preserving them from admixture with foreigners. 
Besides, it is probable that the colony brought from 
Carthage, under the Hannibal of whom we have 
spoken, would tend to keep the Phoenician cus- 
toms alive, if a former Phoenician colony had 
arrived, instead of destroying them, as the influx 
of Romans, Saxons, &c. would tend to do in Bri- 

"It is only necessary to observe here, that 
Aristotle lived near two centuries before the great 
Hannibal, consequently what he said could not 
refer to that individual."* 

Celtic Druids, ch. ii. 39. 


t ^t*W* 


//* i- 

t * 


' ^ ^ v^ ^* J 

--*' ^' 



Skill of the antients in navigation underrated Jason's Expe- 
dition History of the Phenicians EzekieVs description of 
Tyre Great extent of Tyrian commerce 600 years before 
Christ, then a commercial city of great antiquity, had exten- 
sive manufactories Tarshish, its various meanings Hero- 
dotus commences his history with the Phenicians Original 
country of that people Not Canaanites, but Chaldeans 
Vallancey Carthage Greeks borrowed their letters from 
them Circumnavigate Africa from the Red Sea, and re- 
turn by Gibraltar Ships supplied by them to Xerxes in his 
invasion of Greece, their dress, and armour Deities Baal, 
Moloch, Thammuz, Astaroth, Chiun, Remphan, Dagon, Rim- 
mon Seven Chapels of Moloch passing through the fire 
Different adjuncts to Baal BaalSamin, fyc. Baal, the Sun. 

THE advancement of the antients in the sci- 
ence of navigation has been much underrated ; 
the first attempt of Jason, and his Argonauts, to 
Colchis, has led to the conclusion, that before 
that period nautical skill was very low, and ship- 


building' confined to small craft; but the truth 
was otherwise. When the Greeks were in a 
state of comparative barbarism, the Tyrian and 
Sidonian navigators had explored not only the 
Mediterranean, but the Atlantic, beyond the pil- 
lars of Hercules, to the coasts of Spain, Gaul, 
and the British islands, and the northern coasts 
of Africa, were well acquainted with the In- 
dian ocean, and sent to most parts thereof com- 
mercial fleets in their seasons, with all the regu- 
larity of adepts in the arts of navigation and 
commerce \ and, with the exception of the want 
of acquaintance with the magnetic needle, ap- 
pear to have been equal to the accomplishment 
of most of the voyages achieved in modern times. 
They were also great manufacturers as well as 

The following brief statement of the leading 
points of the history of that great people, is 
here given to illustrate and elucidate the objects 
of the work generally, by enabling the reader 
to compare the language, religion, and institu- 
tions of the Phenicians, with those of the Celtee. 

Phoenicia, or Phenice, was the antient name 
of a very small country, between the 34th and 
36th degrees of north latitude, on the sea- cost 
of Syria, and was bounded on the north and east 


by Syria proper, by Judea, or Palestine, on the 
south, and the Mediterranean on the west. The 
northern boundary is made by Ptolemy the river 
Eleutherus, but Pliny, Mela, and Stephanus, 
place it further north in the island of Aradus ; 
it most likely varied at different periods. On 
the coast where the following cities, Simyra, Or- 
thoria, Tripolis, Betrys, Byblus, Palsebyblus, Be- 
rytus, Sidon, Sarepta, Tyrus, and Palsetyrus. The 
climate is agreeable and salubrious, and the soil 
fertile and productive. It is watered by many 
small streams, which, running down from Mount 
Libanus, are often rapid and much swelled by the 
melting of snow and heavy rains ; among them 
is the river Adonis. 

The description of Tyre, by the Prophet Eze- 
kiel,* gives a splendid picture of the magnificence, 
wealth, and power, as well as the refinement and 
civilization, of that antient emporium of com- 

" Say unto Tyrus, O thou that art situate at 
the entry of the sea, and carry on merchandize 
with the people of many isles ; thus, saith the 

* Ezekiel, xxvii. chap. 1. 


Lord God, O Tyrus, thou hast said, I am of 
perfect beauty. 

" Thy borders are in the midst of the seas, thy 
builders have perfected thy beauty. They have 
made all thy ship-boards of fir trees of Senir, 
and have taken cedar trees of Lebanon to make 
thy masts. 

" Of the oaks of Bashan have they made thine 
oars ; the company of the Ashurites have made 
thine hatches of well-worked ivory, brought out 
the isles of Chittim. 

" It was of fine linen and Phrygian broidered 
work from Egypt which thou madest thy spread- 
ing sails ; and thy covering was of the blue and 
purple of the isles of Elishah. 

" The Sidonians and the men of Arvad were 
mariners in thy service, and knowing men, thy pi- 
lots, O Tyre, were in thee. 

" The elders of Gabal, and their able work- 
men, were those who calked the seams of thy ves- 
sels, and all the ships of the sea were employed 
in carrying thy merchandise. 


" The men of Persia, Lydia, and Lybia, were in 
thy service, and thy men of war : they hanged 
up their shields and helmets with thee, and exhi- 
bited the excellence of thy beauty. 

" The men of Arvad were also of thine army, 
and seen upon thy walls, and the Gammadins 
were on thy towers, they hung- their shields 
upon thy walls round about ; they have made 
thy appearance perfect. 

" The merchants of Tarshish traded at thy 
fairs on account of the great variety of all kind 
of thy riches, and brought silver, iron, tin, and 
lead to thy market. 

" Javan, Tubal, and Meshech, brought slaves* 
and vessels of brass to thy market. 

" They of the house of Thogormah brought 
horsemen, horses, and mules to thy fairs. 

" The men of Dedan were among thy mer- 
chants, and many isles supplied thine hand, and 

* Persons of men. 


brought thee, as presents, ebony and horns of 

" Syria traded with thee also for the numerous 
articles of thy manufacture, for which they brought 
to thy fairs emeralds, purple, broidered work, 
and fine linen, coral, and agate. 

" Judah, and the land of Israel, traded also with 
thee, and sent to thy markets the wheat of Min- 
nith and Pannag, honey, oil, and balm. 

" Damascus for the multitude of thy wares and 
great riches, sent thee the wine of Chelbon, and 
white wool. 

" Dan and Javan, going to and fro, attended 
thy fairs, and markets, with manufactured iron, 
sweet-smelling cassia, and calamus. 

" Dedan supplied thee with precious cloths for 
covering of thy chariots. 

" Arabia, and all the princes of Kedar, sent 
lambs, rams, and goats, to thy markets. 

" The merchants of Sheba and Raamah, sup- 


plied thy fairs with the richest spices, precious 
stones, and gold. 

" The merchants of Charan, Canneh, Eden, 
Sheba, Assyria, and Chilmad, supplied thee with 
all kinds of excellent things, as blue cloths, 
Phrygian embroidery, chests of rich apparel, made 
of cedar, and bound with cords. 

" The ships of Tarshish did sing in praise of 
thy commerce, and thou wert replenished and 
made glorious in every part of the ocean. 

" Thy rowers brought thee into great waters ; 
the east wind hath broken thee in the midst of 
the seas." 

" What city is like Tyrus, like the destroyed 
in the midst of the sea ? 

" When thy wares went forth out of the seas, 
thou fillest many people ; thou didst enrich the 
kings of the earth with the multitude of thy riches 
and thy merchandize." 

Again, in chapter xxviii. 

" Son of man, say to the prince of Tyre, Thus 

D 2 


saith the Lord God ; because thine head is lifted 
up, and thou hast said, I am powerful as God, I 
sit in the seat of God, and command in the midst 
of the seas." 

" Thou hast been in Eden, the garden of God ; 
every precious stone was thy covering, the sar- 
dius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, 
and the jasper, the sapphire, and the carbuncle, 
and gold. The workmanship of thy tabrets and 
thy pipes." 

The 23d chapter of Isaiah, describes the over- 
throw of Tyre : 

" The burden of Tyre, Howl ye ships of Tarsh- 
ish,* (the ocean) for it is laid waste, so that there 

* Junius and Tremellius, render Tarshish, oceanus (or 
western sea) it is presumed on account of its western posi- 
tion, or ignorance of its precise meaning. But Tarshish could 
not always mean the ocean, for the prophet Jonah took ship 
to go to Tarshish, which, therefore, must have been a place 
on shore. They also render Tarshish, in the Book of Jonah, 
Tarsusy and say in a note, " oppidum maritimum postea ap- 
pellatum Joppen" It is more than probable that Tarshish 
was often put for the western ocean. Carthage and Cadiz 
have also been considered Tarshish. 


is no house, no entering in, from the land of 
Chittim it is revealed to them. 

" Be still, ye inhabitants of the isle : thou 
whom the merchants of Sidon, that pass over the 
sea, have replenished with revenue from the ocean, 
and the seed of Sihor from the harvest of the 
river ; she is the mart of nations. 

" Be thou ashamed, O Sidon, for the sea hast 
spoken, even the strength of the sea, saying, I tra- 
vail not, nor bring forth children, neither do I 
bring up young men or virgins. 

" As at the news concerning Egypt's disasters, 
so shall they be sorely pained at the report re- 
specting Tyre. 

" Pass ye over to Tarshish ; howl ye inhabitants 
of the isle.* 

" Is this your joyous city, whose antiquity is 

* Junius and Tremellius in their translation of the Scrip- 
tures, gives this passage : " Transite per oceanum, eju- 
tate habitatores insulse." Tyre was rebuilt on an island, af- 
ter Nebuchadnezzar had destroyed the old city. 


ofantient days ? her own feet shall carry her far 
off to sojourn. 

" Who hath taken this counsel against Tyre, 
the crowned city, whose merchants are princes, 
and whose traffickers are the honourable of the 
earth ? 

" The Lord of hosts hath purposed it to stain 
the pride of all glory, and to bring into contempt 
the honourable of the earth. 

" Pass through thy land as a river, O daughter 
of Tarshish, (the ocean) there is no more strength, 
Howl ye ships of (the ocean) Tarshish for your 
strength is laid waste." 

No one after reading these descriptions of the 
state of Tyre, written about the year 590, before 
the Christian era, can question that the Pheni- 
cians were competent to send large ships to the 
British islands, or doubt that they did so. They 
built their ships of fir, and made masts of the 
cedar of Lebanon, and traded to all parts of 
the then known world, and for every descrip- 
tion of merchandize. Their manufactures also 
were of great extent. " The multitudes of the ar- 
ticles of thy making.' 3 


Tarshish supplied them with silver y iron, tin, 
and lead. Now tin exists not in any part of 
Europe but in Britain, therefore that island must 
have been at least part of Tarshish, but as before 
is suggested, Tarshish meant the western ocean, 
and the countries situated upon it. 

Tarshish, in Hebrew, tfcMttnn is the name 
of a precious stone, rendered a beryl in our 
translation of the Scriptures ; but it is not of 
Hebrew derivation, or from any Hebrew root, 
therefore, most likely, its name was obtained from 
the country in which the stone was found,* 
some consider it a chrysolite, which it probably 
was. It is mentioned in the 28th and 39th chap- 
ter of Exodus, and, if this idea be correct, Tarshish 
was known to the Phenicians, full 1500 years 
before the Christian era, which is also agreeable 
to what Isaiah says, speaking of Tyre. " Your 
joyous city, whose antiquity is of antient days." 
There can, indeed, be little doubt of the traf- 
fic to Tarshish, by the Tyrians, at a very remote 

* Jacob Rodrigues Moriera, a Spanish Jew, in his Kehilath 
Jahacob, or Hebrew Vocabulary, renders Tarshish Car- 
thage, and "ttnn Carshiiy and O3ip Cartena, a Carthaginian. 
He also makes the stone a Sardius. The true meaning of 
both was evidently uncertain. 


antiquity. At the time when Ezekiel wrote the 
Tyrians must have been upwards of 1000 years 
a mercantile people, it is almost puerile to sup- 
pose they were not adepts at navigation after 
so long a practice. 

Tarshish applied to the western countries, 
and, if the Gaelic language and that of the Phe- 
nicians were the same, which I see no reason to 
doubt, its meaning, is very strong corrobora- 
tion of the Phenician origin of the Celtse. It is 
tty, country J<x/i, western ylof, down in 
that is literally the western country or the 
country down in the west, pronounced Tiarshish. 
It is that sort of denomination which the moderns 
have imitated, in the West Indies, meaning all 
the northern parts of South America ; East In- 
dies, meaning the two peninsulas and the Indian 
islands, including the ocean in both cases. 
Tarshish, therefore, may be considered all the 
western parts of Europe conquered, settled, or 
traded with, by the Phenicians. 

It is worthy of remark that Csesar says the 
Britons had mines of silver, iron, tin, and lead, 
but that they imported brass. Ezekiel says, the 
ships of Tarshish supplied Tyre with these very 
metals, and those only. 


Tarshish, is mentioned as one of the sons of 
Javan, son of Japliet ; but, as all Hebrew names 
were significant, his descendants might have 
had the name from their position in the west. 
Elisha and Chittim, mentioned as the bre- 
thren of Tarshish, were the alledged ancestors of 
the Greeks and Macedonians. 

Herodotus commences his history with an ac- 
count of the origin of the Phenicians, whom he 
considered as the earliest of civilized nations. 
He says : 

" The most learned Persians, in the history 
of their country, attribute to the Phenicians the 
cause of the enmity between them and the Greeks. 
They say that being come from the neighbour- 
hood of the Red Sea to the coast of (the Mediter- 
ranean) our sea, soon after they had established 
themselves in the country which they now inhabit, 
they undertook long voyages by sea, and carried 
the merchandize of Egypt and Tyre to many 
countries, and among others, to Argos, a city 
which surpassed all others at that time in Greece. 
They add, that the Phenicians being arrived, set 
about selling their goods. Five or six days after 
their arrival, the wind being low, a great many 


women, and among them the king's daughter, 
whose name was lo, the daughter of Inachus, a 
name also given to the Greeks, went down to 
the shore to purchase such things as were agree- 
able to their taste, near the stern of the ships ; 
the Phenicians rushed upon, seized them, and 
forced the princess, and some others, on board 
the vessels, and having made sail proceeded to 

It appears from this that the Phenicians be- 
fore they settled in that part of Asia Minor, 
called from them Phenicia, inhabited the coasts 
of the Red Sea. But being an enterprizing mer- 
cantile people they carried their merchandize 
across the deserts to the Mediterranean, formed 
settlements there and built the celebrated cities 
of Tyre and Sidon. The distance from which, 
to their Phenician town on the Red Sea, was not 
more than two or three hundred miles. 

The Homeritae, who inhabited the southern 
part of Arabia Felix, were also called, by the 
Greeks, Phenicians, and that name in Arabic, 
means the same thing as Phenicia in Greek. They 
inhabited the city of Sanaa, on the western branch 


of the Hargiah river, which is marked in the map 
of M. D'Anville, Cana Emporium. This river 
discharges itself into the Indian ocean. Other 
authors bring the Phenicians from the Persian 
Gulph ; and Strabo gives that opinion, without 
his authority. Afterwards, having cited a verse 
of Homer, referring to the Sidonians, he adds : 
" It is not known whether we should understand 
by these Sidonians, those who inhabit the Gulph 
of Persia, or those our neighbours, who are a 

Dionisius, the Periegite, is of the same opi- 
nion as Herodotus, he says : " The Syrians who 
live near the sea, and are called Phenicians, are 
descended from the Erythreans. They were the 
first who traversed the seas in ships.* 

Thus we see that the Phenicians were not 

/ >/ ' 

Canaanites, except by residence, that is, they 

A J J 

were not the descendants of Canaan. And, if 
from the Persian Gulf, they were a colo- 
ny of Chaldeans, therefore the similarity of 
their language, religion, and customs, to the 
Indians, who borrowed so much from that people, 

* Dion. Pericg. Descript, vcrs. 105. 


is not so very wonderful. It would be singu- 
lar if it was not striking. 

^/General Vallancey makes the Phenicians Mag- 
gogian -Scythians, and the first astronomers, na- 
vigators, and traders, after the flood ; who set- 
tled in Armenia, and afterwards passed down the 
Euphrates to the Persian Gulph, into the In- 
dian ocean, to the Red Sea ; and eventually to 
the Mediterranean Sea, to Tyre and Sidon. This 

* A * 

idea is indeed consistent with the account 
of Herodotus, who brings them from Chal- 
dea. But it is not so much the object of this 
work to show from whom the Phenicians des- 
cended, as to demonstrate their capability of mak- 


ing long voyages, their skill in navigation, and 
enterprizing spirit of colonization, and that the 
* Celtae were colonies of that people./ 

The intense labour of Vallancey's investigations, 
is astonishing, but it is very difficult to follow 
him through the mazes of his etymological la- 
byrinth ; the mind becomes fatigued by tracing 
words through so many etymons, and the extent of 
his researches, plunges us into great perplexity 
and doubt, instead of satisfying the mind. It is 
not just, however, to condemn Vallancey for not 
having his evidences arranged and systematized, 


lie only undertook to collect, leaving others to 
methodize and place in intelligible order. He 
often establishes his premises, but again bewilders 
by the multiplicity of his proofs, some of which 
are not of the strongest or most palpable, and 
frequently weakens his argument by adding slen- 
der testimony on a point already established. 

" Cambyses, (king of Persia) commanded his 
fleet to attack Carthage, buf the Phenicians 
refused to obey him, because they were attached 
to the Carthaginians by their oaths and the strong- 
est of ties, and considered that if they were to 
fight against their own children, they would violate 
the rights of blood and religion. The rest of 
the fleet were not found strong enough for the 
expedition, so the Carthaginians escaped the yoke 
which was prepared for them. Cambyses did not 
think it prudent to force the Phenicians, because 
they rendered him service voluntarily, and be- 
cause they possessed so much influence in the 

The Greeks had letters from the Phenicians.t 

* Herodotus in Thalia, xix. f Terpsichore Iviii. 


Herodotus says : " Whilst they remained in the 
country (Greece) the Phenicians, who had ac- 
companied Cadmus, among whom were the 
Gephreans, introduced much science and in- 
formation, and amongst other things, letters, 
which in my opinion were unknown before. 
The letters were first used in the same manner 
as among the Phenicians ; but afterwards changed 
with the language, and took a novel form. The 
neighbouring country of the colony was occupied- 
by the lonians, who adopted the letters in which 
the Phenicians had instructed them, but they 
made some slight alterations. It would only have 
been good faith and but justice to have called the 
letters Phenician, because that people introduced 
letters into Greece. The lonians also, by an 
antient custom, call the books (Si<0pa!) skins, 
because at the time, when the (BujSXoc) Papyrus 
was scarce, they wrote on the skins of goats and 
sheep, it is still the custom among the barbari- 
ans to write on all kinds of skins./ 

/ Herodotus in Melpomene, c. xlii. speaking of 
Africa, by the name of Lybia, says : " Lybia is 
surrounded by the sea, except on that side where 
she is joined to Asia. Pharaoh Necho, king of 
Egypt, (who reigned between the years 61 6 and 
600 ante Christum) was the first, as far as we 


know, who ascertained this fact. At the time he 
camsed to be discontinued the digging- of the canal 
which was intended to convey the waters of the 
Nile to the Red Sea, he sent certain Phenician { 
ships to sea, with orders to proceed southward to 
circumnavigate Africa, and return by the Pillars 
of Hercules, in the northern seas, and so to re- 
turn to Egypt." 

" The Phenicians embarked in the Erythrean 
(Red) Sea, sailed into the southern ocean, and, 
when autumn was come, they went a shore, in that 
part of the coast of Africa which they had reach- 
ed, and sowed corn ; waited till harvest, and 
when they had obtained supplies of provision, 
again put to sea. Having thus navigated for 
two years, in the third, they arrived at the Pillars 
of Hercules, (the Straits of Gibraltar,) and re- 
turned safely to Egypt. They stated on their 
return that they had sailed entirely round Africa, 
and had the sun on their right hand. This fact 
appears to me incredible, but it may not to 
another. It was in this manner Africa was 
known for the first time." 

It is here established that the Phenicians, 
undoubtedly, doubled the Cape of Good Hope 
upwards of six hundrf^ years before the Christian 
era, an achievement which the Portuguese ac- 


complished upwards of two thousand years after, 
and obtained the greatest glory by discovering 
the way to India by sea. That it was done, is 
proved by the fact of the voyagers' statement of 
the sun appearing on their right hand, or to the 
north, of them. A fact which the historian did 
not credit, but which is now known to be true, 
and confirms the accuracy and truth of the state- 

Who will after this glorious enterprize of the 
Phenicians, discredit the regular voyages of that 
enterprising, intelligent, and gallant people, to 
the British islands, or their capability of accom- 
plishing a voyage not attended with half its diffi- 
culties or 'dangers. This fact is sufficient to 
satisfy any rational mind, that the Phenician na- 
vigators were not far behind the moderns in 
nautical skill, and that in daring enterprize they 
were their equals. 

M. L* Archer, blinded by his Greek predelic- 
tions, did not wish to admit that the Greeks had 
no knowledge of letters before the time of Cad- 
mus, says the letters of the Phenicians were in- 
troduced at that time, but that the Pelasgic cha- 
racter was known long before. It is not an im- 
portant point in the consideration of our subject, 
but it appears very explicitly laid down as his 


opinion by Herodotus, that the Greeks were 
indebted to the Phenicians for the first knowledge 
of letters. 

Herodotus mentions* that the vessels which 
formed the fleet of Xerxes in his invasion of 
Greece was 1207, an d f tna t number the Phe- 
nicians furnished 300. 

Diodorus differs but in seven ships. 







Pamphylians - 




. Cyprians 







2 < 



. Islanders 


200 Phenicians - - 300 

300 Egyptians - 200 

80 Cyprians - - 150 

80 Cicilians - - 100 

40 Pamphylians - - 30 

40 Lycians - 50 

150 Dorians - 50 

40 Carians - - 70 

40 lonians - - 100 

100 Islanders - 17 

80 Eolians - - 60 

50 Hellespontians - 100 

1200 1207 

" The Phenicians and Syrians of Palestine, fur- 
nished three hundred. These people wore hel- 
mets very like those of the Greeks^ shirts of 

* Polyhymnia Ixxxix. 

f We give an engraving of a Phenician soldier in bronze 
found in a bog in Ireland. The whole description here given 
exactly corresponds with the weapons and remains found in 


linen, had darts, or javelins, and shields, but 
not edged with iron. 

" The Phenicians, as they say themselves, dwell- 
ed in former times on the coasts of the Erythrean 
(Red) sea, but passing 1 from thence to the coast 
of Syria, there established themselves. That part 
of the country, with that extending to the very 
frontiers of Egypt, is called Palestine." 

From the idolatry of the Phenicians, the Greeks, 
and other European nations, borrowed most of 
their deities ; their gods were Baal, Moloch, 
Thammuz, Astaroth, Chiun, Rempham, Dagon. 
Moloch) sometimes called Molech and Milcom. 
Baal and Moloch have been supposed the 
same, from the similarity of the import of their 
names T7D Malek, to rule, or light which rules 
the heavens ; also a king, and *7J73 Baal, which 
signifies Lord and Master.* They had both the 
same manner of worship. " They sacrificed their 
sons for burnt offerings unto Baal likewise ;t yea, 
they built the high places of Baal, which are in 
the valley of Benhinnom, to cause their sons to 
pass through the fire unto Molech."t In which 

* The Gaelic rnolc isjire. 
J- Jer.. xix. 5. J Jer. xxxii. 35. 


passage Molech, apparently, is put at the end to 
explain Baal, with which the sentence commences, 
the locality is the same for the place of sacrifice. 

Some authorities, however, make them differ- 
ent, because the planet Jupiter was worshipped 
under the name of Baal, and Saturn under the 
name of Moloch. There is, however, much 
confusion on the subject ; the sun is sometimes 
called Baal, sometimes Moloch, sometimes Ju- 
piter, and often Saturn. The Greeks gave the 
names of their own gods to the deities of other 
nations, whose attributes were similar. " Hence, 
(says Goodwin*) Jupiter was called by the Phe- 
nicians, Baal-samen, which name is derived from 
the Hebrew, sourideth as much as Jupiter Olyvnpi* 
cus, the Lord of heaven ; for Baal signifies Lord 
and Shamaim, heaven. And what is this Lord 
of heaven, in the theology of the heathens, other 
than the sun ? who may as well be stiled the king 
of heaven, as the moon, the queen. Yea Sancho? 
niotho, as Eusebius in the forequoted place,! re* 
lates him, taketh all three for one, namely, Sun, 
Jupiter, and Baal-samen" 

* Moses and Aaron, Lib. iv. c. 2. 
f Kuofbius do prepar- lib. i. cap. 7, 

.0^ THE AEL. 

" Saturn's image differed little from that of 
Moloch, and people sacrificed their sons and 
daughters to both.* " Saturn's image" was made 
of brass, wonderful for its greatness, whose hands, 
reaching towards the earth, were so hollow, (rea- 
dy to claspe) that the youths who were compelled 
to come unto him did fall, as it were, into a 
mighty ditch full of fire." Jalkut in his commen- 
taries on Jeremiah, t says : " Though all other 
houses of idolatry were in Jerusalem, yet Moloch 
was without the gates in a private place. How 
was he made ? He was an image of brasse, he 
had seven chapels, and he was placed before them, 
having the face of a bullock and hands spread 
abroad^ like a man that openeth his hand to re- 
ceive somewhat from some other ; and they set it 
on fire within, for it was hollow ; and every man 
severally entered according to his offering. After 
what manner ? Whosoever offered a fowl went to 
the first chapel ; he that offered a sheep to the 2d ; 
a lamb to the 3d ; a calf to the 4th ; a bullock 
to the 5th ; an ox to the 6th ; and whoever offered 
his son to the 7^h. Thus Moloch and Saturn 
agree, first in their sacrifice, and secondly in the 
form of their images." 

* Macrobius's Saturn, lib. i. c. 7* 
f Chap. vii. fol. 97, col. i. 


" These seven chapels resemble the seven gates 
with which the Persians honoured the sun, and 
mystically represent the seven planets, of which 
the Sun was Moloch, or king. When they sacri- 
ficed their sons, they beat tabrets and drums, that 
the cry of the child might not be heard by the 
father, from which the place was called Tophet 
from qn ? Tlioph, signifying a drum. 

* c Some commentators say the children were 
burned, while others assert they were only ini- 
tiated, or consecrated to Moloch, passing between 
two fires, as the ceremony of consecration. It 
is probable both were in use. The Scriptures 
mention both, as do also the Hebrew Doctors. 
Jalkut expressly says they were burned ; and 
AbenEzra,* says, " That Moloch is the name of 
an image, and the wise men, of blessed memory, 
interpret Moloch to be an universal name, denot- 
ing any whom they made to rule over them ; and 
it is agreed that this was an abomination of the 
sons of Ammon, and this phrase to pass through, 
is as much as to burn." Rabbi Solomon^ says : 
" This idol's name was Moloch, and this was his 
worship : that he (a father) delivered his son unto 

* Lev. xvii. 21. f Lev. xviii. 21, 


the priests, and they made two great fires ; and 
they made the son pass, on his feet, between both 
these fires." 

" The offering* of a son or daughter, however, it 
is considered, was reputed a work of great merit, 
and was not enjoined by any law, but only a mark 
of great zeal, or the performance of some vow* 
The priests of Baal in their contest with Elijah,* 
offered a bullock ; but the priests wounded and 
cut themselves after their manner, thus making a 
sacrifice of their own blood. Lactantius mentions 
this custom as practised by the priests of Bellona, 
61 they sacrificed not with any other men's blood 
but their own, their shoulders being lanced, and 
with both hands brandishing naked swords, they 
ran and leaped up and down like mad men." 
This description is very like what is said of the 
priests of Baal. * 5 They leaped upon the altar, 
and cut themselves with knives and lancets, after 
their manner, till the blood gushed out upon 

" Porphry, treating of Saturn, saith that the 
Phenicianst called him Israel, and that he had by 

* 1 Kings, xviii. 
f Eusebius prepar, Evan. lib. i. c. 7. p. 17. 


one only son called Jeud in the Pheni- 
cian language, no doubt from the Hebrew Jechid, 
only begotten, and applied to Isaak,* which he 
offered upon an altar purposely prepared." 

The sun and stars were worshipped under the 
names of Chiun and Remphan. " Ye have borne 
the tabernacle of your Moloch, and Chiun, your 
images, the star of your god, which ye have made 
for yourselves."t Again, " Ye took up the ta- 
bernacle of Moloch, and the star of your god 
Remphan"^ In some copies this latter is 
called Repham, and was probably the same as 

" The Egyptians called Hercules Chon, and 
by Rephain we are to understand Hercules also 
for D'XSl Rephaim, signifies giants. Hercules 
is derived by some from the Hebrew b3"VNn 
Haircol, illuminavit omnia, the giver of all light. 
The Greek etymology is similar, ypag /cXtoc, and 
both designate that brilliancy which flows from 
the fountain of light the sun. Porphry interprets 
the twelve labours of Hercules to be the twelve 
signs of the Zodiack, through which the sun an- 

* Gen. xxii. 2. f Amos, v. 26. j Acts, vii. 43. 


nually passes. In the time of the Macchabees, 
Jason, the high priest, sent 300 drachms of silver 
to the sacrifice of Hercules,* the god of the 

Thammuz, St. Jerome says, was Adonis, which 
is generally interpreted the Sun, from the He- 
brew Adon, signifying lord, the same as Baal, 
and Moloch, the prince or lord of the planets. 
Our month of June was called by the Jews Ta- 
muz, and the entrance of the sun into Cancer, 
they called Tekupha Tamuz, the revolution of 
Tamuz. The death, or loss, of Adonis is supposed 
to allude to the departure of the sun twice a year 
to the tropics of Cancer and Capricorn. The 
women weeping for Thammuz is the origin of 
weeping for Adonis. A river of Phenicia was de- 
dicated to Adonis. 

Baal bore many adjuncts to his name, as Baal- 
samen, Baal-Peor, Baal-Tsephon, Baal-zebub, 
Baal-Berith, and Bel. 

The sun was the original Baal, but afterwards 
it became a name to many Deities. " There are 

* 2 Macch. iv. 19. 


many gods many Baalims or lords,"* in the 
same way as Jupiter has many names added to 
his general title. Jupiter Olympius, Capitolinus, 
Latialis, Pluvius, Lucetius, Tonans, fyc. 

Baal-Peor, was called Peor, from the hill where 
he was worshipped, and by some is supposed to 
be Priapus. His temple was called Beth Peor. 
Chemosh is supposed to be the same tfnDD, 
so called in derison, as much as to say the blind 
god, for the first letter caph, signifies as if, and 
musch, to grope or feel about like blind men. 

Baal- Tsephon, is Baal the observer or watcher, 
(as Jupiter Stator) from nB2f Tsapha, to watch. 

Baal-zebub. The Lord of Flies, as Jupiter 
Muscarius, or Hercules Muscarius, the driver 
away of flies. 

Baal-berith some say from the Lord of Co- 
venant PHD is a covenant beJ/Om in Gaelic is 
To create, and betyjb, he creates, or the creator, 
therefore Baal-berith may have been God, the 

1 Cor. viii. 5. 


Bel, or JBelus. The chief divinity of the Chal- 
deans and Babylonians, in whose honour the ce- 
lebrated tower of Belus was erected, the first and 
greatest temple of idolatry, the spring and foun- 
tain from which the whole earth became infected 
with polytheism ; originally erected in honour of 
Belus, or Nimrod, whose pride and insolence 
made him assume the name and character of di- 
vinity, and who, like Louis XIV. of France, took 
the sun for his emblem, and was afterwards wor- 
shipped as god, by his besotted successors. He 
was the first of men who received the apotheosis. 
His sacrifices w r ere by fire, and to his golden image 
set up by Nebuchadnezzar, those faithful and un- 
daunted Jews were sacrificed, in his accustomed 
manner, by being thrown into the fiery furnace, 
because they defied the power of the tyrant and 
contemned his God. 

As Bel, or Baal, was worshipped and sacrificed 
to by fire, so was his great temple bowed down, 
confounded, and the stones or rocks of his temple 
rolled down from their lofty eminence by the fire 
of the Almighty, and was made a burnt mountain.* 
Recent travellers describe the top of the moun- 

* Jeremiah li. 25. 


tain, formed of the debris of the tower, or temple, 
of Belus, as covered with " immense fragments 
of brick work of no determinate figures tumbled 
together, and converted into solid vitrified 
masses" " Some of these huge fragments mea- 
sure twelve feet in height, by twenty-four in cir- 
cumference," " having been exposed to the fiercest 
jire, or rather scathed by lightning" " They are 
completely molten a strong presumption that 
fire was made use of in the destruction of the 
tower, which in part resembles what the Scrip- 
tures prophesied it should become " a burnt moun- 

The Phenicians, no doubt, brought with them 
their idolatry and worship of Bel, or Baal, to the 
Red Sea, and after to Tyre and Sidon, and from 
thence it was introduced to the Canaanites, and 
Jews, who adopted the rites, worship, and even 
the name of the deity, and all sacrificed to him 
human victims by fire, as did the Celtse. 

Dagon some Jewish doctors say this idol was 
made like the figure of the fabulous merman, from 
the middle downwards like a fish, for jn dag is a 
fish. Others derive his name from f jn dagon, 
corn, and therefore suppose him to have been Sa- 
turn who is said to have invented husbandry. 


Astaroth was a great deity of the Sidonians, 
and the moon was worshipped by that name. As- 
tarte, some say, was Juno, who was often used to 
signify the moon, and both were styled Urania ; 
so in regard to the stars she is called Astroarch, 
or the queen of planets, and Siderum regina. 
Virgil speaks of Juno, " Divum incedo regina," 
it is very probable she was the queen of heaven, 
spoken of by Jeremiah.* They who performed 
their solemn worship to Juno Calendaris, on the 
first day of every month, or Calend, must have 
meant the moon. And as Ammon was the sun, 
and worshipped in the form of a Ram, Juno 
might be called Ammonia, and worshipped in the 
form of a sheep. The Jewish Doctors describe 
the images of Astaroth as in the form of a sheep, 
and the word signifies a flock of sheep. The 
moon was called Ammonia, as the sun was Am- 
mon, both from their heat n/DH hammah, or 
ama, heat, caloric. The images which was placed 
on the house top, mentioned in Leviticus xxvi. 30, 
and Isaiah xvii. 8 xxvii. 9, were called hamma- 
nim, because they were always exposed to the 

* vii. 18 xliv. 17. 


Jupiter Ammon was figured with horns, be- 
cause the astronomer's year commences when the 
sun enters Aries, and the sun or Apollo has been 
painted with ram's horns for the same reason. 
Moses is painted with light, or horns, from a mis- 
understanding of the meaning of the Hebrew 
word pp corn, signifying horns, but also splen- 
dour and magnificence. 

Phenicians worshipped their gods in groves 
when Jehu called the priests of Baal together, 
those of the groves amounted to 450. 

This rather minute account of the deities of 
the Phenicians, and their immediate neighbours, 
is necessary to be detailed as we shall have occa- 
sion to show hereafter. That the gods of the 
Celtse were the same, not only in their attributes, 
but, in some cases, in their very names. 

Herodotus supposes the Phenicians to have 
been circumcised, but Josephus positively states 
that none of the nations of Palestine were cir- 
cumcised but the Jews. They were very early 
devoted to philosophical duties ; Moschus, a Si- 
donian, is said to have taught the doctrine of 
atoms, before the Trojan war ; and Abomenus, 
a Tyrian, to have puzzled Solomon with his ques- 


tions. Both Tyre and Sidon produced their phi- 
losophers j Boethus and Diodatus, of Sidon, and 
Antipater and Apollonius, of Tyre, the latter 
gave an account of the writings and disciples of 

The Phenicians were so very powerful peo- 
ple both by sea and land, that they were able to 
defend themselves against Joshua and the Israel- 
ites ; David and Solomon were unable to master 
them, and were glad to accept their friendship and 
alliance ; and lastly, the seige of the city of Tyre 
occupied more of the time and exertions of Alex- 
ander the Great, than the conquest of all the rest 
of Asia. He collected as many ships as he could, 
and brought from Lebanon an immense quantity 
of cedars and other timber ; with the stones, and 
other materials, of the old city of Tyre, which he 
threw into the sea, he formed a pier across from 
the continent to the island on which the new city 
was built. His works were often washed away 
by the strength and force of the sea, but with un- 
remitted perseverance he persisted till he perfect- 
ed his passage to the island ; having reached 
their walls, he erected turrets of wood to overtop 
them, and thus became master of the city. He 
put to the sword all who resisted, and cruelly 
caused two thousand prisoners to be hanged along 


the shore, in a line, to strike terror in his oppo- 
sers ; upwards of 15,000 escaped in ships, and fled 
to their colonies. 

Long before this utter desolation by Alexander, 
Salmanassar, the king of Assyria, having conquer- 
ed the ten tribes of Israel, besieged Tyre by 
land, blockading it by sea with sixty ships, which 
were soon attacked by the Tyrians with twelve 
sail, who took or dispersed his fleet, and made 
five hundred prisoners. The Assyrians after this 
continued the siege for eleven years, but eventu- 
ally were compelled to raise it with disgrace to 
their arms, and great glory to the Tyrians. 

Shortly after the repulse of Salmanassar, and 
about two hundred years before Alexander, Ne- 
buchodnezzar, after he had destroyed Jerusalem 
and its temple, laid siege to Tyre ; the citizens 
defended themselves with great bravery and de- 
termination for thirteen years, and afterwards re- 
tired with their wives, children, and property, to 
the island, on which they built a new city, which 
became equally prosperous. They thus resisted the 
mighty power of the kings of Assyria and Baby- 
lon. It is thought, however, that they consented 
to become tributaries to the kings of Babylon. 
Of the kings of the Tyrians mentioned in the 


Scriptures, Josephus, and other antient writers, it 
may be well to say a few words. 

Agenor was considered to have been contem- 
porary with Joshua, and to have been succeeded 
by Phoenix, who is said to have given name to 
the country. 

Much discussion has taken place as to the deri- 
vation and meaning of the name of Phoenicia, with- 
out a satisfactory solution. It has always been a 
fancy with writers of history, in cases of difficulty, 
to fix on an individual, and from him to name a 
country, thus to supply the absence of evidence 
by surmise. Antient countries and places gene- 
rally took their names from their peculiar cha- 
racter and circumstances, people, from a dis- 
tinguished ancestor. The Phenicians were called 
so, because they were a nation of sailors, or mari- 
ners, as the word Phcenice intimates jreJne, a 
ploughman and oJce, water a plougher of the 
sea, a most emphatic and very expressive term. 
From this last word oJce, is derived the ocean 
o)ce, water cean, head, principal, or chief. 
The great or chief water or sea. The Pheni- 
cians were the great ploughers of the sea, or 
navigators. They were also called Scuits, from 
the same cause ycuJte, is a ship, and a wanderer 

TYRE. ()5 

by sea as well as by land, therefore the Pheni- 
cian Irish were called Scoti, and not from their 
imaginary country, which last idea is one of those 
shrewd but ignorant and unfounded guesses, ven- 
tured by a bold writer, and followed by others on 
his sole authority, without inquiry or investiga- 
tion of its foundation in truth, which have led 
subsequent historians into error, and established 
fiction for true history. 

Jeremiah speaks of the kings of Tyre, but does 
not mention their names. At the time of Xerxes' 
invasion of Greece, Tetramnestris ruled that part 
of Phenicia about Sidon, and commanded the 
three hundred Phenician ships who joined his 

Tonnes, but not immediately, was king after 
Tetramnestris ; his successor, Strato, governed 
w 7 hen Alexander conquered Tyre ; but there must 
have been many between him and Tormes, for 
there was one hundred and thirty years between 
Xerxes and Alexander. 

The names of the kings of Tyre before 
Samuel's time, do not appear. Abybaal is the first 
king of Tyre mentioned by Josephus. He was 
succeeded by Saron, whom David compelled to 



pay him tribute. Hiram, his son and successor, 
entered into alliance with David, and sent him 
cedars, carpenters, and masons, to complete his 
buildings in Jerusalem, after he had beaten the 
Jebusites. He also assisted Solomon in the con- 
struction of the temple. He seems to have been 
a magnificent prince, for he despised the twenty- 
towns offered him by Solomon, to whom he gave 
his daughter in marriage, and she is supposed to 
have induced that prince to worship Astaroth, the 
idol of the Phenicians. 

Baleastratus, Balecartus, or Bazoris, succeeded 
Hiram, and reigned seven years. Abdascartus 
or Abdastratus, the eldest son of the last named 
prince, reigned nine years, but was murdered by 
the four sons of his nurse ; the eldest secured the 
government to himself for twelve years, but was 
eventually ousted by Astartus, the brother of Ab- 
dascartus, who reigned twelve years. 

Astarimus, or Atharimus, brother to the last 
king, succeeded and reigned nine years. He was 
slain by his brother Philles, who reigned eight 

Ithobal, or Ethbaal, (3c corn, b<x<xl lord) son 
of Astarimus, chief priest of the goddess Astaroth, 

TYRE. 67 

a dignity next to the king, revenged the death of 
his father, slew his uncle, and reigned twelve 
years. His daughter was Jezebel, who was the 
wife of Ahab, king of Israel. 

Badezor, or Bazer, son of Ithobal, succeeded 
his father, and reigned six years, 

Mettimus, Malgon, or Belus, succeeded Ba- 
dezor, and reigned nine years. He had two sons, 
Pygmalion and Barca, and two daughters, Eliza 
and Anna. 

Pygmalion reigned forty years. In the seventh 
year of his reign, Eliza (Dido) is said to have 
sailed to Africa, and built Carthage, one hundred 
and forty-three years after the building of the 
temple of Solomon, which, by some accounts, was 
two hundred and eighteen years after Troy was 
taken, and one hundred and forty-three before 
Rome was built, for, to use a quaint term of an 
old writer, " Virgil's stone was out of square." This 
event took place about the commencement of the 
first Olympiad, A. A. c. 

Pygmalion, coveting the riches of Sicheus, 
who had married his sister Eliza, slew him while 
hunting, or as Justin and Virgil has it, at 


the altar. Whereupon Eliza, with her brother 
Barca, fled with her treasure into Africa, and 
built Carthage. From Barca sprung the noble 
family of the Barcse, of which the great Hanni- 
bal, and many other illustrious warriors, were 

Eluleus succeeded Pygmalion and reigned thir- 
ty-six years. It was he who defeated and de- 
stroyed the fleet of Salmanassar. 

Ithobal succeeded Eluleus, it was to him was 
addressed the passage in the 28th chapter of 
Ezekiel, " Because thine head is lifted up, and 
thou hast said I am powerful as God, I sit in the 
seat of God, and command in the midst of the 
seas, &c." 

Baal succeeded Ithobal and reigned ten years ; 
after his death, Tyre was governed, somewhat as a 
republic, by judges, or chief magistrates. Emba- 
lus, Eknibaal, Abarus, or Abdarus, the priest, 
Mitgon, and Gerastus, who held the govern- 
ment among them seven years. After whom Ba- 
lator was king for one year, to whom succeed- 
ed Merbal, who was sent from Babylon, and 
reigned four years, and was succeeded by Irom, 
another Babylonian prince, who reigned twenty 

TYRE. 69 

years ; in his seventeenth year Cyrus began to 
reign in Persia. 

Ptolemais, now called Acre, Dora, and Caesa- 
rea Palestina, are sometimes considered to have 
been Phenician cities. Herod rebuilt the lat- 
ter, and formed a harbour, which is said to have 
exceeded all others in that part of the world. Jo- 
sephus says, he cast immense stones into the sea 
where it was seventy fathoms deep, some fifty feet 
long, eighteen broad, and nine thick ; and thus he 
stretched out a pier into the sea, two hundred 
feet long, and after that a kind of break water, 
by which he made a most commodious harbour, 
where formerly was but an open bay. Within 
the walls he erected palaces of polished marble, 
with a theatre and amphitheatre, and a tower 
from which he could look out a long distance to 
sea,, which he called after Drusus, the Emperor's 

r ^ 



The Siege of Tyre by Alexander the Great. 

THE glorious defence made by the citizens of 
Tyre, against Alexander the Great, is a sub- 
ject worthy to be celebrated by an Iliad. The 
citizens defied the impetuous conqueror, and held 
his army at bay for seven months. Long was 
the question doubtful, and often did the haughty 
chief regret that he had undertaken a task so 
full of difficulty. Frequently did he despair of 
success, and gladly would have abandoned the 
siege, could he have done so, without compro- 
mising his character for invincibility. 

The acquirements of the Phenicians, and their 
progress in the arts and sciences, was much more 
considerable than generally is conceived. They 


* 72 THE GAEL. 

knew how to wield and concentrate the tremen- 
dous power of machinery in a manner which 
moderns give them little credit for. 

Tyre seems to have been the focus of scientific 
knowledge ; in her were collected the most emi- 
nent for skill and intelligence ; all fell under 
the ruthless and murdering hand of that scourge 
of the human race, whose ambition for glory 
induced him to destroy the most illustrious 
city in the world, and by one act to annihilate a 
people who had done more for the civilization of 
the human race than all the world beside. The 
baneful and withering effects of the destruction 
of Tyre were felt at the extreme points of the 
known world, and plunged them again into bar- 
barism. The decapitation of this head of civi- 
lization, rendered the body of the world almost 
an inanimate and inchoate mass, without vigour, 
force, or energy. 

The following account of the event, extracted 
from Diodorus Siculus, which, however, must be 
considered a very imperfect sketch of its realities, 
exhibits a picture of a people, worthy of a better 
fate ; whose gallant and vigorous exertions in 
defence of their city, and liberties, only provoked 
the savage cruelty of the conqueror, instead of 


exciting his admiration and respect. He caused 
2000 of those brave defenders to be hanged 
for daring to dispute his will, when they were in- 
capable of farther resistance. 

" Alexander the Great, after the battle of 
Issus, commanded his army to take rest and re- 
creation for some days. On his progress to in- 
vade Egypt and bring it to subjection, he came 
to Phenicia. The inhabitants of most of the 
cities, by a prompt submission, were received into 
favour. The Tyrians alone, pertinaciously re- 
fused to permit him to enter their city ; and 
when he desired to offer sacrifice to the Tyrian 
Hercules, they resolutely refused him admis- 
sion. Very much irritated and indignant at 
their presuming to dispute his will, Alexander 
threatened to take the city by force. The Ty- 
rians, confident in the strength of their defences, 
and anxious to serve Darius, with whom they 
were in strict amity, expecting to be re- 
warded for their fidelity, and the service they 
would render him by delaying the progress of 
the king of Macedonia, thus affording him 
time to repair the effect of his late disasters, pre- 
pared for a siege, nothing doubting the fortifica- 
tions of the island ; and besides their own re- 

*f 2 

< THE 

sources, relied on their friends and kinsmen, the 
Carthaginians, for assistance, in case of need. 

" Alexander having reconnoitred the city, per- 
ceived that it would be most difficult to storm 
it by sea, on account of the active exertions of 
the citizens, who possessed and employed great 
resources for the defence, and he could do nothing 
without a fleet. From the land he could pro- 
duce no effect, because the island, on which the 
city stood, was four stadii (about half a mile) 
from the continent. He, however, thought it 
better to undergo any labour and expense rather 
than allow the Macedonian power to be held in 
contempt by a single city, however magnificent. 
He, therefore, immediately set about pulling 
down the ruins of antient Tyre, as it was then 
called, and with the stones and other materials 
to make a pier of the breadth of 200 feet from 
the continent to the island; having pressed 
the inhabitants of all the neighbouring cities into 
his service, by the multitude of workmen, in 
seven months he accomplished his object. 

" XVI. At first, the Tyrians ridiculed him, 
going to the pier in boats, jeeringly asking if he 
thought himself superior to Neptune ; but af- 
terwards, contrary to their expectation, the pier 


progressing rapidly, they began to apprehend the 
worst, and as a measure of precaution they 
transported their wives, children, and old men, 
to Carthage, keeping the young men to defend 
the walls and to fight at sea, for they had eighty 
ships of war. The operations of so many work- 
men on the pier, rendered their ships almost use- 
less, and they were driven to defend the walls on 
all sides. Although they had a great number 
of catapults and other machines of defence, they 
made many more, Tyre abounding in workmen 
and all kind of artificers. The instruments of 
destruction were improved and made efficient by 
new contrivances, and the walls of the city in 
every part were covered with machines of defence, 
particularly on that side next the pier, which at 
length was brought by the enemy within reach 
of the missiles of the Tyrian machines. While 
the contest was doubtful, a prodigy was given by 
the gods, for the waves brought from the depths 
of the sea, a monstrous animal of incredible size, 
to the pier. It, indeed, brought no injury to the 
work, but for some time rested part of his body 
upon it, and eventually returned to the deep. 
This event caused great interest, on account of 
its novelty. Both parties augured that Neptune 
was propitious. The superstitious people chained 


the statue of Apollo, with golden chains to its 
pediment, lest he should leave the city. 

** XLII. The citizens being at length alarmed 
by the near approach of the pier, armed boats 
with slingers and engines, and attacked the 
workmen, who, being crowded on so narrow a 
space, were so exposed, that immense numbers of 
them were slain. Alexander, however, to coun- 
teract this, manned boats with solders to attack, 
and if possible, to cut off the retreat of the Ty- 
rians* boats from the city, and made with the 
greatest eagerness for the port of Tyre. The 
barbarians, fearing lest he should gain the port 
and take the city in the absence of its defenders, 
returned in haste, and both rowed as hard as they 
could to get in first ; when the Macedonians 
were just at the port, the Phenicians were nearly 
being destroyed, but they forced their way through, 
and got in safely, except a few of their last boats 
which were lost. Although Alexander was much 
dispirited at this determined defence, he perse- 
vered, and having armed boats to protect the 
workmen, they were more safe in future. When 
the works had approached near the city, so that 
it even appeared probable it could be taken, a vio- 
lent gale of wind prostrated a great part of the 


work. This sudden destruction perplexed Alex- 
ander so much, that he regretted he had under- 
taken the siege ; but, incited by a desire of glory, 
he cut down immense trees in the mountains of 
Libanus, which he carried down to the city, and 
being thrown in with their branches, and covered 
with heaped earth, successfully resisted the force 
of the waves, and restored the parts which had 
been knocked down ; and having again approached 
within the reach of the weapons, he built his ca- 
tapults and machines on the pier, and with them 
threw down the walls, and drove away, by his 
missiles, the defenders from their posts, the archers 
and slingers, made great havock among the 

" XLIII. The Tyrians, accustomed to the 
sea, and having abundance of workmen and ma- 
terials, contrived, with great industry, remedies 
against the weapons of the catapults. They 
made wheels, with many spokes, which they 
turned round by machinery, and thus broke, and, 
indeed, rendered useless, most of the weapons of 
their adversaries, and repelled every blow, how- 
ever violent ; the stones being thrown aside by 
the wheels, were received on soft materials, and 
were thus rendered innoxious. The king not 
being satisfied with his ' approaches by the pier, 

* 78 THE GAEL. 

having accurately reconnoitred the walls, deter- 
mined to beseige it by sea as well as land, by sur- 
rounding the island with ships. The Tyrians 
did not venture to meet the king's fleet, which 
destroyed three ships stationed at the port's 
mouth, and then returned to the camp. The 
Tyrians, to render their walls doubly firm, built 
another wall, ten cubits thick, at the distance of 
five cubits, and filled up the space between with 
stones and earth. Alexander having joined his 
boats together, placed upon them various kinds 
of machines, and destroyed above a hundred feet 
of the walls, over the rubbish of which he 
thought to enter the city. But the Tyrians, with 
a firm and steady bravery, repulsed their enemy, 
and repaired, by night, the wall which had been 
thrown down. When, however, the pier was 
joined to the walls, and the island rendered a 
peninsula, they began to contrive many other 
means of defence ; for although they had a pros- 
pect of the worst of evils, and considered the 
horrors attending a storm, their minds were 
confirmed against danger, and they despised 
death. For when the Macedonians reared up 
lofty towers, equal, in height, to the battlements, 
and from these threw bridges, as it were, over, 
and boldly approached the walls, the Tyrians had 
great advantage in defence, from the ingenuity 
of their works. 


" They made brazen grapples, of the requisite 
dimensions, with which they struck the men 
standing on the towers, and, having fixed them 
in their shields, dragged them upwards, by means 
of ropes, who, of necessity, must then submit 
either to lose their arms, and thus expose their 
bodies to be wounded by some of the numerous 
weapons directed against them, or, retaining their 
arms, for fear of disgrace, to fall from the lofty 
towers, and thus perish. Others threw strong 
nets round those fighting upon the bridges, and, 
entangling them, drew them down from thence 
to the ground. But they devised another extra- 
ordinary artifice against the valour of the Ma- 
cedonians, by which they involved the bravest of 
the enemy in a disastrous and irremediable cala- 
mity. For having prepared vessels of brass and 
iron, and filled them with sand, which they heated 
very hot with fire, and, by means of machines, 
flung them against their enemies, and thus in- 
flicted upon the fallen the greatest of all evils ; 
for the sand penetrating through the thorax, and 
the inside vest, and fretting the skin, by reason 
of its excessive heat, made a wound which could 
not be cured. Whereupon those afflicted sent 
forth all manner of lamentation and supplication, 
but had no one to assist them ; so, driven to fury, 
and, by the acuteness of their suffering, falling 

* 80 THE GAEL. 

under their miserable and unutterable misfortune, 
they breathed their last. Meanwhile the Pheni- 
cians ceased not to hurl fire, darts, and stones, 
against the enemy ; and thus the valour of the 
besiegers was often compelled to yield to the 
force of the weapons of their opponents, who, 
cutting with hooks the ropes which supported 
the battering rams, very much diminished their 
force. They then hurled, from fire engines, 
great lumps of iron, against the thickest file of 
the enemy, and, by their very dense number, few 
fell without effect ; and, with iron grapples in 
their hands, they dragged down the besiegers by 
their coats of mail ; and, because of the number 
of the defenders, they avoided the weapons of their 
adversaries, and slew many of them. But im- 
pressed with the conviction that the difficulty 
and danger could not long be sustained, the 
Macedonians remitted nothing of their determi- 
nation, but, passing over the bodies of their com- 
rades, did not as much as consider their calamity. 
Alexander having directed the catapults to hurl 
large and rugged stones against the walls, at 
length shook them, and then plying them with 
every kind of missile weapon, inflicted grievous 
slaughter on those who defended the walls. But 
the Tyrians, no wise dismayed, contrived an an- 
tidote against even this assault, by placing mar- 


ble wheels before the walls, which, being revolved 
by the power of machinery, broke the weapons 
thrown from the catapults, or, turning them into 
an oblique direction, made their shock ineffec- 
tual. They also took hides, and skins of beasts, 
which they filled and sewed up with sand and 
rubbish, and on this received the whole force of 
the engine ; being of a yielding nature, it easily 
broke the violence of the stones that were 
thrown. Thus did the Tyrians defend their 
city in every possible manner, and, being very 
much assisted by her allies, met the enemy 
with boldness, and, leaving the walls and station 
within the towers, rushed upon their enemy's 
bridges, and exposed themselves, most valiantly, 
to the exertions of their foes ; the combatants 
enfolding one another, there was a great con- 
test for the love of glory and country some with 
hatchets severed the bodies of those opposing 
their progress. A certain Macedonian leader, 
named Admetus, eminent for his valour and 
strength of body, when he resolutely received 
the attack of the Tyrians, being struck with an 
axe in the centre of the head, forthwith heroically 
relinquished life. Alexander, seeing the despe- 
rate fury of the Tyrians bearing hard against the 
Macedonians, and night now advancing, sounded 
a retreat. At first he determined to relinquish 

* 82 THE GAEL. 

the siege, and to make a campaign into Egypt, 
but, changing his mind again, considering it 
would be an indelible disgrace to him, and give 
the glory of having ' successfully defended their 
city to the Tyrians, he followed the counsel of 
his friend Amyntas Andromus, and again deter- 
mined to press the siege. 

" Having exhorted the Macedonians not to 
abate their valour, and prepared vessels with every 
kind of warlike implement, he attacked the city 
both by land and sea ; and supposing that the part 
of the wall near the sea would be weakest, he sent 
out a galley, with three banks of oars, laden with 
suitable machines. Then he ventured to under- 
take an act, which even those who beheld it could 
scarcely credit, for joining a bridge from the 
wood of the tower to the walls of the city, by 
means of it he ascended the wall alone, not 
fearing the envy of fortune, or prevented by 
the vigour of the Tyrians ; and having the forces 
which had been victorious against the Persians 
witnesses to his heroic conduct, he ordered the 
other Macedonians to follow him. Himself, 
their leader, slew those who opposed him, strik- 
ing some with the spear and others with the 
sword, even hurling down some with the edge 
of his shield : he damped the ardour of the 


enemy. Whilst these exploits were per- 
forming, the battering ram, in another part, 
had effected a vast breach in the wall, through 
which the forces of the Macedonians rushed in. 
Alexander, with his own hand, scaled the walls 
by the bridges, and took the city. 

" Nor was the valour of the Tyrians even 
then depressed or destroyed ; they exhorted one 
another to defend the narrow passes, and keep 
up the fight, till every man should be cut off 
the number that remained was about seven thou- 

" The king made slaves of the children and 
women, and hanged no less than two thousand of 
those in the flower of youth. A great multi- 
tude of captives were found, so that although 
many had been carried away to Carthage, the 
remnant of them exceeded thirteen thousand. 
Thus did the Tyrians, more daring and magnani- 
mous than prudent, fall, after a siege of seven 

" Then the king made golden chains and pre- 
sents for Apollo, and ordered the God to be 
called Apollo Phil- Alexander ; and when he 
had sacrificed, in a sumptuous manner, to Her- 

* 84) THE GAEL. 

cules, and rewarded those men who had distin- 
guished themselves at the siege, and buried the 
dead with great solemnity, he appointed one, 
whose name was Ballonymus, to the government 
of the city of the Tyrians, about whom it would 
not be unfitting to speak a little, on account of 
the extraordinary circumstances attending his 

" This Ballonymus was taken, and made king, 
from a garden where he was drawing water for 
hire, and was miserably dressed ; he was, how-' 
ever, of the royal race, an honest man, and of 
good character. Alexander having given the 
choice of a king for the Tyrians to Hsephestion, 
he selected this man, and had him taken out, 
royally robed, and proclaimed king, to the great 
joy of the people." 

The name of Ballonymus is worthy of obser- 
vation, on account of its import in the Gaelic 
b<xl, a noble ; <xn, without ; <xnno<xn, a name ; or 
the obscure or nameless noble man. 

After the capture of Tyre, by Alexander, the 
power of the Phenicians of Syria ceased altoge- 
ther their trade was annihilated with their inde- 
pendence j for security of property, which is 


indispensable to successful commerce, was made 
to rest on the will of a military despot and whole- 
sale plunderer, whose glory consisted in being 
the scourge and curse of the human race. The 
mind sickens with disgust at the contemplation 
of the splendid plunderings and murderings of 
such men as Alexander, who destroyed the finest 
city, and the most magnificent people, because 
they dared to defend themselves against his ruth- 
less mcroachments. It may be said he was but 
an instrument, and the horrors he inflicted, 
judgments ; still he must, individually, 
considered but an atrocious plunderer. 
Carthage, the most powerful Phenician co- 
lony, succeeded to the position of the first ma- 
ritime people of the antient world. The rem- 
nant of the Tyrians were received with kindness, 
and became a part of the Carthaginian people ; 
who also had the name of Feinoice, or Phe- 
nicians, and, afterwards, underwent a fate very 
similar to their mother city, Tyre, being utterly 
destroyed by the Romans about 148 years before 
the Christian era. 




Found in a bog in Ireland about two years since. It is ex- 
actly similar to the Etruscan bronzes found in Italy. 



Aylett Sammes first advanced the opinion that the Phenicians 
colonized Britain His Britannica Antigua Ulustrata 
Increase of mankind after the Deluge, overrated Invention 
of Shipping Learning and refinement the fruits of Com- 
merce The Phenicians and Egyptians, the most po- 
lished people of antiquityProofs of the Phenician coloni- 
zation of Britain and Ireland The antient mine workings 
Mr. Griffiths Phenician language Cerne, what Erin, 
what Cabiri Gallilee Gael Phenician or Tyrian Her- 
cules Melicartus, what in Hebrew, and Irish Ogamus and 
Ogam, what ? Toland's account of Ogamus Lucian's 
account of Ogmius Inscription at Colchester to the Tyrian 

IT is not, perhaps, claiming too much for the 
evidence produced in the last chapter, to say that 
it is there satisfactorily demonstrated that the 
Phenicians were sufficiently advanced in the prac- 
tical exercise and science of navigation, to have 
sent fleets and colonies to conquer and settle the 


British islands, long before the Greeks knew any 
thing of nautical affairs on a respectable scale. 

That the Phenicians did carry on a regular 
commercial intercourse with the British islands, 
has been admitted by most writers as unquestion- 
tionable ; but the opinion that the merchant 
princes of Tyre and Sidon were the first settlers, 
or colonizers of Britain, was first advanced, and 
zealousy advocated by Aylett Sammes, in his 
"Britannia Antigua Illustrata" published in 
1676, a work little known, but valuable, as a di- 
gest of what is said by antient authors relative to 
the British islands. The conclusions he drew 
from his premises are often, perhaps generally, 
erroneous, or questionable, and are at best but 
guesses ; but, considering the disadvantages under 
which he laboured from being unacquainted with 
the language spoken by the Britons and Celts, 
were shrewd and ingenious ; he was a very learn- 
ed man, and from his knowledge of Hebrew was 
able to detect in the Celtic deities, those 'of the 
Phenicians, which, no doubt, led him to pur- 
sue a subject exciting but little interest in the 
trifling and profligate period in which he lived. 
Like Lhuyd, his contemporary, he could not pre- 
vail on a bookseller to publish the work. Had he 
been acquainted with the Gaelic tongue, the work 


would have been much more perfect and satisfac- 
tory ; but still it is a compendium of useful infor- 
mation, mixed indeed with much trash, for he 
collected every thing-, even the fables of Geoffrey 
of Monmouth, leaving his readers to form their 
own judgment. 

Sammes thought the Phenicians found Britain 
uninhabited ; that they settled and peopled it 
that the inhabitants at the time of the Romans 
were their descendants, and that the world was 
not so early stocked, by a miraculous increase after 
the deluge, as was generally supposed. 

" Much has been said," he observes, " of the 
wonderful increase of mankind immediately after 
the deluge, yet in the time of Abraham, two hun- 
dred and ninety-two years after that event, the 
land of Canaan was not fully peopled. * Is not 
the whole land before us ?' said Lot ; and when 
Jacob went to Egypt, the land of Goshen was 
unoccupied. Nor was the increase so great for 
the first five hundred years after the flood as suf- 
ficiently to people Armenia, and the countries 
lying in its immediate neighbourhood. 

" People do not voluntarily emigrate, nor until 
they find themselves inconvenienced by numbers, 


and consequent want of food, &c. the finest and 
richest soils are naturally chosen for cultivation, 
and occupied before those which are less desirable, 
afterwards the less promising ; and when popula- 
tion increases so much that all is occupied, in the 
next generation, the gradual and natural swarm, 
as among bees, must of necessity seek new settle- 
ments. So it was in the beginning, and will be so, 
ssecula sseculorum. Mankind crept on by de- 
grees, and thus insensibly became inured and fa- 
miliar to different climates." 

" The Greeks," says Mr. Sammes, " attributed 
the invention of all arts and sciences to their own 
nation, and thus brought their origin down to 
their own pitiful epocha" 

" The invention of ships has been attributed to 
Erythrus, who is supposed by Scaliger, and others, 
to be Edom, and to have lived about 400 years 
after the flood. But whoever first invented the 
noble vehicle, the Phenicians certainly improved 
and first brought the large ships into use for mer- 
chandize, and are entitled to the credit and ho- 
nour of posterity." 

" Prima ratem ventis credere docta Tyrus." Tibullus. 


The invention of ships could not have been a 
desideratum, while they had the model and ex- 
ample of the ark ; the accurate detail of its 
construction, given by Moses, exhibit skill and 
judgment in ship building of no ordinary charac- 
ter, supposing it to have been his own statement 
of the naval architecture in his day. 

Riches and the refinements of life flow natu- 
rally from successful commerce, so learning and 
scientific knowledge are called into existence 
when a community possess abundance and wealth. 
Manufactures naturally spring up from the pos- 
session of the raw material, and new artificial 
wants are created by every succeeding step in ci- 
vilization, which the ingenuity of man never fails 
to supply. Therefore, the Phenicians and Egyp- 
tians were the most polished, learned, and best 
informed people of antiquity. The haughty 
Greeks acknowledge that they derived their let- 
ters from Cadmus, a Phenician, though some 
have endeavoured to show that they then only 
received the particular form of their letters. 
These writers are anxious to give all dignity and 
honour to the Greeks, even at the expense of 
truth. Phenicia was as high among the antients 
as England is among the moderns, she had 
fewer competitors, and no rivals who could 


cause jealousy ; possessing the seas and the ocean 
she became the mother and mistress of nations. 
The Greeks were afterwards the humble copiests, 
but never approached her stature in commercial 
importance or naval enterprize ; after the fall 
of Tyre, they appropriated the naval heroes 
and the discoveries of their predecessors, to them- 
selves, and, translating the names, given by the 
Phenicians, into Greek, passed them for their 

From the Phenicians, therefore, the early an- 
tiquities of Celtic, and most of maritime Europe, 
is to be derived ; the coasts of the Mediterranean, 
Spain, Celtic Gaul, and the British islands, having 
received their names from that people. 

The Cassiterrides of Strabo have generally 
been considered the Scilly islands ; he describes 
them as separated from Britain by a narrow chan- 
nel j but that the metallic islands, from whence 
the Phenicians derived their silver, lead, iron, and 
tin, as stated by Ezekiel, Herodotus, and the 
more antient authorities, were the British islands 
at large, is proved by the very extensive an- 
tient workings of mines in both England and 


It is not necessary to show these workings in 
England, their existence is notorious ; that they 
were equally extensive in Ireland appears in the 
following extract from the Report made to the 
Royal Dublin Society, on the Metallic Mines of 
Leinster, in 1828, by Richard Griffith Esq. mining 
engineer ; an evidence of no mean importance, 
who gave his testimony without any idea of its 
historical importance : 

" If we may judge from the number of ancient 
mine excavations, which are still visible in almost 
every part of Ireland, it would appear, that an 
ardent spirit for mining adventure, must have 
pervaded this country at some very remote pe- 
riod. In many cases no tradition, that can be de- 
pended upon, now remains of the time, or peo- 
ple, by whom the greater part of these works were 
originally commenced : they are generally attri- 
buted to the Danes; but every ancient castle, 
rath, or tumulus, throughout the country, is re- 
ferred, and in many instances certainly with very 
little reason, to that people ; and it is difficult to 
suppose that foreign invaders should have been 
the first to explore our natural advantages, when 
it is remembered how superior our more remote 
ancestors were to all the neighbouring nations in 
literature, in civilization, and in the arts. Of their 


skill in metallurgy we have abundant proofs from 
the numberless articles wrought in gold, silver, 
copper, brass containing zinc, bronze containing 
tin, and other mixed metals, that have been dis- 
covered in every part of Ireland, many of which 
display beautiful forms and exquisite workmanship. 
It is worthy of remark, that many of our mining 
excavations exhibit appearances similar to the sur- 
face workings of the most antient mines in Corn- 
wall, which are generally attributed to the Phoeni- 
cians, who, from the remains of their arms, their 
language, and other vestiges, which have been dis- 
covered, indubitably visited that country, and who 
are supposed to have shivered the rock into small 
fragments, by first heating it to redness, by means 
of large fires, and afterwards cooling rapidly, by 
throwing on water.' 5 * 

Mr. Griffith personally inspected almost 
every mine in Ireland, and from the office he 
held, was peculiarly qualified to supply valuable 
and important evidence, both as a mineralogist 
and metallurgist, because its accuracy cannot be 
questioned. He tells us that the mines were ex- 

* Griffith's Report to the Royal Dublin Society on .the 
Metallic Mines of Leinster, 1828. 


tensively worked in almost every part of Ireland, ' 

and that an ardent spirit for mining adventure ^ > * 

must have pervaded this country at a very remote 

period. And further, that the antient Irish .. -y^w . 
possessed "skill in metallurgy, we have abun- 
dant proofs from the numberless articles in gold, 
silver, copper, brass containing zinc, bronze con- 
taining tin, and other mixed metals, that have '** 
been discovered in every part of Ireland, many 
of which display beautiful forms and exquisite ^ 

^-fr**** #**>+** tfb**** J -**f, - 

We are notwithstanding told, by some writers,^* <* 
that, those who assert that evidence exist of the 
antient civilization of the Irish, are visionaries, 
and enthusiastic dreamers ; but, as is justly ob- 
served by Dr. O'Conor on another occasion, 
those who do not admit such evidence to be con- 


elusive, prove themselves to be incapable of draw- 
ing just conclusions from historic evidence, c *** 

That the Phenicians spoke a dialect of the He- 
brew, has been inferred from many passages in the 
holy Scriptures. As the spies of Joshua do not 
appear to have been known as foreigners, and 
the conversations of the Jews with the Canaanites, 
was apparently without an interpreter, as was the 
conversation of our Saviour with the Canaanitish 


or Syro-Phenician woman. It also appears from 
Herodotus that they came from Chaldea, and no 
doubt from their commercial intercourse were a 
mixed people, and had many Hebrew words among 
them, if their language was not derived from the 
same source. The spies are not so much a case in 
point, for Phenicia was to the north of Judea, and 
was not conquered by Joshua, nor were the Phe- 
nicians descendants of Canaan. They were only 
Canaanites, as were the Jews, by residing in the 
land of Canaan, but their origin was from Chal- 
dea, as was that of the Jews. 

" Hanno, the Carthaginian, passed the straits of 
Gibraltar, "with a fleet of threescore sail, accom- 
panied with 30,000 men," coasted along the Af- 
rican shore, and built many cities, and settled the 
country as far as Cerne, Chernaa, of the Pheni- 
cians, beyond which they had no colony. Cerne 
meaning the last habitation" Mr. Sammes ob- 
serves on this : " From this Cerne, or If erne, 
(n Cheth, being resolved in h 9 ) I think the antient 
name of Ireland, Erne and lerne, as Strabo calls 
it, proceeded rather than from Ibernce, as learned 
Bochartus shows it, although both of the same 
signification, and implies as much as the utter- 
most habitation, as indeed Ireland is West- 

ERIX. 81 

What a convincing passage is this from an in- 
dividual unacquainted with the Irish language, 
and ignorant of the strong corroboration it af- 
fords. He adds : 

" These derivations I take to be truer than to 
take it from Eirin of the natives, and that from 
Heire, signifying the westward among them, be- 
cause I have shown before that countries that have 
their names from situations and customs, receive 
them ab extra" 

Now Erin is not the Irish name for Ireland, 
but the genitive inflection of Eire, the proper 
name of Ireland, Jap, is the west, the end, even/ 
thing last, beyond, the extremity. This word is 
precisely pronounced the same as &tye, Ireland, 
and is in common use at this day, as Ja/t con<xct, Cv^\e^M 

West Connaught, J<x^ murrwJn, West Munster, 
or Ormonde. From this it is evident the name 
was given by the Phenicians, who conquered the 
country, and spoke ab extra* 

" The reason which concludes me in the belief 
that Ireland took its name from the Phenicians 
is, because, in the uttermost coast of Spain, west- 
ward, is a promontory, called by Strabo, lerne, 



and the river next to it, is called by Mela, lerne, 
so that we see that when Spain was the uttermost 
bounds of the knowledge of the Phenicians, Spain 
was called lerne ; but when these islands were 
discovered, then Ireland took the name as being 
the uttermost. I cannot imagine how the names 
should correspond, if they had not the same ori- 
ginal ; besides, in the farthermost parts of Ireland 
there is a river called by Ptolemy, lernus, agree- 
ing in name with the river lerne in Spain, and all 
this cannot be from Hiere, signifying West, in 
Irish, because there is no other language in Eu- 
rope besides the Irish, that have any such kind of 
word to signify the west, for we find that those 
countries that have any thing of west position, are 
in the Teutonick called so, adding West, as West- 
rich, Westphalia, to Germany, Westminster, 
West Chester, &c. to London." 

Taking this interesting passage, in conjunc- 
tion with the Herne, or Cherne, on the coast of 
Africa, as the most western, or uttermost point 
of Phenician settlement there, it proves satisfacto- 
rily that the Phenicians did give name to Ireland, 
and tends to show the Irish were a Phenician 
colony, there being an identity of meaning in both 
languages, at least those who spoke what is now 
called the Irish, Gaelic, or Gaeltic language, 


" because there is no language in Europe, besides 
the Irish, that have any such kind of words" to sig- 
nify the west, or the local peculiarities of places, 
which received names from the Phenicians. 

Strabo* says, in citing Artemidorus, who lived 
in the time of Ptolemy Lathyrus, " there was an 
island near Britain, in which Ceres and Proserpine, 
were worshipped with the same rites as in Samo- 
thrace." Mr. Sammes argues therefrom that 
this worship was introduced by the Phenicians, 
because the Greeks had made no discoveries in 
those seas at that period ; and the Phenicians, 
who had taught the Samothracians the myste- 
ries, were the only navigators then acquainted 
with the British islands. 

It is remarkable that the word Cabiri, which 
signified the Samothracian gods or mysteries, 
" is a Phenician word signifying power and great- 
ness" In Irish, coiBaJ/i is a support, a shield, a 
defence, cabala has the same meaning ; and 
c<xb<kJ/ie means a babbler, or prater, probably from 
the mystical unintelligible talking of the initiated 
to the vulgar. 

Lib. iv. 

84* THE GAEL. 

It has escaped all observation, as far as I have 
discovered, that the country about Tyre and Si- 
don, as far as Acre, antiently bore the name of 
Galilee, or country of the Gael on the sea coast ; 
the very name, Gael, the Phenician colonies in 
Europe called themselves, and gave to their set- 
tlement in Europe; g<xel, the Gael Ja country 
ojl), sea coast. I feel unwilling to go beyond 
the bounds of just criticism, or to strain a point 
in favour of any hypothesis, but can I refuse 
to claim the Phenicians as the ancestors of the 
Gael, and Galilee for their original country ? 
The facts which support the deduction appear to 
me so strong that they force themselves on my 
judgment, and are also supported by the pro- 
bable and apparently natural and reasonable 
course of events. The conclusion appears ir- 
resistable, that the Gael were a Phenician co- 
lony, who conquered and settled Celtic Europe at 
such remote antiquity that when they were found 
by the Romans in Gaul, Britain, and Ireland, 
they had forgotten all but a tradition of their ori- 
ginal country, their gods, their religion, and their 

The history of the Phenician Hercules is but 
an allegory of the acts, conquests, and settle- 
ments, of that great commercial people. Ac- 


cording to f^arro, the Greeks reckoned forty- 
three individuals of the name of Hercules, and 
attributed their actions to many distinguished men, 
of their own nation, but, as is the case with all 
fable, there exists no intelligible account of any 

" The Phenician Hercules is said to have been 
the son of Demarus, king of Tyre ; his name, 
Melicartus, signifies, namely, king of the city, for 
so the Phenicians called Tyre. The Amathusi- 
ans who descended from the Phenicians, named 
him simply Malica, the king"* 

The name of Melicartus, king or lord of the 
city, of which Malica was merely an abbreviation, ^ , c 
and meant the same thing, is in Irish mat n<x c<xtaJ/i, 
king of the city, and would sound Melnacaer. 
The Hebrew ^hft malek, a king, and in 3 cathar, 
a city, led Mr. Sammes to this conclusion : 

" From his admirable skill in navigation, the 
Greeks made him god of the sea, but feigned him 
to be the grandson of Cadmus, calling him Pa- 
Isemon, and having modelled him according to 
their own fancies, gave him a numerous offspring. 

* Philo Biblius ex Sanchoniatho. 

8() THE GAEL, 

But from Cadmus to the Theban Hercules, are 
numbered ten generations, all which time is in- 
ferior to this Hercules, who by many, is supposed 
to be contemporary with Moses," 

That the temple of Hercules on the straits of 
Gibraltar, was built by the Tyrians, we have the 
united testimony of Strabo, Appian, Diodorus, 
Arrian, and Philostratus. Strabo, in particular, 
describes the motives and occasion of the building, 
Hercules, he says, coasting about Spain and Af- 
rica, built many cities; he vanquished the two 
giants, Albion and Bergion, or in other words, 
conquered and settled the two islands of Albion 
and Ibernia, or larnia, and drove out the Belgian 
inhabitants, called in Irish history Firbolgs, jrea/i- 
fcolg Belgian men. 28otg is a leather bag, from 
which a ship had the name, the coracles of the 
Belgae being made of wicker covered with skins, 
and were but an extended bag, 

Marcellinus praises Timagines for his care in 
searching and selecting evidence of the acts of 
Hercules out of many records. Mr. Sammes 
supposes that these must have been Syrian or 
Phenician records, for Bochart proves that Tima- 
gines was a Syrian, and therefore understood 
the language ; Plutarch says he wrote a history of 
Gaul. Having passed the Straits, Hercules 


settled the sea coast of Gaul, lying on ocean, 
conquered Iberia, most parts of Spain, and, 
no doubt, the British islands, for tin was brought 
to the east long before a Greek entered the west- 
ern seas. 

Pliny says " Midacritus first brought tin into 
Greece ; Bochart was inclined to think that this 
name was the same as Melicartus, and Her- 
cules first discovered the mines of this metal in 
the British islands. There is on the western coast 
of Devonshire a promontory called Herculis Pro- 
montorium, to this day called Hertland Point." 

" He was worshipped in Gaul and Britain un- 
the name of Ogmius, and Lucian says he was 
represented as " an old and decrepid man 9 the 
top of his head bald, his hair white, with wrinkled 
skin, sun-burnt after the manner of seamen, a 
globe in one hand, and a compass in the other. * 
to show his excellent skill in geometry and as- 

" He was pictured also, drawn with chains pro- 

* Lucian says he had a club in one hand and a bow in the 
other. Where, in Lucian, Mr. Sammes found the description 
here given he does not say. 


ceeding from his mouth and fastened to the ears 
of multitudes of men to show his learning and 

is the Irish word for secret learning and 
writing, and seems to refer to Ogmius. If taken 
alone little depen dance should be placed on the 
coincidence, but when added to such a crowd of 
evidence arid such universal and extraordinary 
coincidence, the whole amount almost to demon- 

Toland in his history of the Druids, gives the 
following statement respecting Hercules Ogmius : 
" The Irish, a few Scandinavian and Danish 
words accepted, being not qnly a dialect of the 
antient Celtic or Gallic, but being also more like 
the mother, than her other daughter, the British, 
(Welsh) and the Irish MSS. being more numer- 
ous and much antienter than the Welsh, shows 
beyond all contradiction the necessity of this Ian- 
guagefor retrieving the knowledge of the Celtic 
religion and learning. Camden and others have 
long since taken notice of the agreement be- 
tween the present British and those old Gallic 
words collected by learned men out of Greek and 
Roman authors ; and the industrious Mr. Lhuyd, 


late keeper of the Museum at Oxford, perceived 
this affinity between the same words and the Irish, 
even before he studied that language, by the de- 
monstration I gave him of the same in all the 
said instances," " without the knowledge of the 
Irish language and books, the Gallic antiquities, 
not meaning the Francic, can never be set in any 
tolerable light, with regard either towards names 
or things. I shall here give one example of this, 
since I just came from treating of the several 
professors of learning common to the antient 
Gauls, Britons, and Scots, viz. the Druids, Bards, 
and Vaids. Lucian relates, that in Gaul, he 
saw Hercules represented as a little old man, 
whom in the language of the country they call 
Ogmius, drawing after him an infinite multitude 
of persons who seemed most willing to follow, 
though dragged by extremely fine and almost im- 
perceptible chains, which were fastened at the one 
end to their ears, and held at the other, not in 
either of Hercules's hands, which were both other- 
wise employed, but tyed to the tip of his tongue, 
in which there was a hole on purpose where all 
those chains entered. Lucian wondering at this 
manner of portraying Hercules, was informed by 
a learned Druid who stood by, that Hercules did 
not in Gaul, as in Greece, betoken strength of 
body, but < force of eloquence, which is there beau- 


tifully displayed by the Druid in his explication 
of the picture that hung in the temple. Now 
the critics of all nations have made a heavy pother 
about this same word Ogmius, and laboriously 
sought for the meaning of it every where, but just 
where it was to be found." " Lucian does posi- 
tively affirm, Ogmius was a Gallic word, " a word 
of the country ;" " but the word Ogmius, as Lu- 
cian was truly informed, is pure Celtic, and sig- 
nifies, to use Tacitus' phrase about the Germans, 
the secret of letters, and particularly the letters 
themselves, and consequently the learning that 
depends on them, from whom the force of elo- 
quence proceeds : so that Hercules Ogmius is the 
learned Hercules, or Hercules the protector of 
learning, having, by many, been reputed himself 
a philosopher. To prove this account of the 
word, so natural and so apt, be pleased to under- 
stand that from the very beginning of the colony 
OGUM, sometimes written OGAM, and also OGMA, 
has signified in Ireland the secret of letters, or the 
Irish alphabet," " whence it happened that Ogum, 
from signifying the secret of writing, came to sig- 
k &^>^ nify secret writing, but still principally meaning 
the original Irish characters." 

The following is a translation from the origi- 
nal Greek of the whole passage of Lucian. 


" The Gauls call Hercules, in their country 
language, OGMIUS, but they represent the picture 
of the god in a very unusual manner. With 
them he is a decrepid old man, bald before, his 
beard extremely grey, as are the few other hairs 
he has remaining. His skin is wrinkled, sun-burnt, 
and of such a swarthy hue as that of old mariners, 
so that you would take him to be Charon, or some 
Japetus from the nethermost hell, or any other 
rather than Hercules, But though he is such, 
thus far, yet he hath withall the habit of Hercules : 
being clad in the skin of a lion, holding a club in 
his right hand, a quiver hanging from his shoul- 
ders, and a bent bow in his left hand. Upon the 
whole it is Hercules. I was of opinion that all 
these things were perversely done, in dishonour 
of the Grecian gods by the Gauls, to the picture 
of Hercules, revenging themselves upon him by 
such a representation, for having formerly over- 
run their country, and driving a prey out of it ; 
as he was seeking after the herd of Geryon, at 
which time he made incursions into the western 
nations. But I have not yet told, what is most 
odd and strange in the picture : for this old Her- 
cules draws after him a vast multitude of men, all 
tied by their ears. The cords, by which he does 
this, are small fine chains, artificially made of gold 
and electrum, like to most beautiful bracelets. 


And though the men are drawn by such slender 
bonds, yet none of them think of breaking loose, 
when they might easily do it ; neither do they 
strive in the least to the contrary, or struggle 
with their feet, leaning back with all their might 
against their leader, but they gladly and cheerfully 
follow, praising him that draws them, all seem- 
ing in haste and desirous to get before each 
other, holding up the claims, as if they should be 
very sorry to be set free. Nor will I grudge 
telling here, what, of all these matters, appeared 
the most absurd to me : the painter finding no 
place where to fix the extreme links of the chains, 
the right hand being occupied with a club, and the 
left with a bow, he made a hole in the tip of the 
god's tongue, who turns smiling towards those he 
he leads, and painted them as drawn from thence. 
I looked upon these things a great while, some- 
times admiring, sometimes doubting, and some- 
times chafing with indignation ; but a certain 
Gaul who stood by, not ignorant of our affairs, 
as he showed by speaking Greek in perfection, 
being one of the philosophers, I suppose, of that 
nation, said ; * I will explain to you, O stranger, the 
enigma of this picture, for it seems not a little to 
disturb you. The Gauls do not suppose, as you 
Greeks, that Mercury is speech or eloquence, but 
we attribute it to Hercules because he is far su- 


perior in strength to Mercury. Do not wonder 
that he is represented as an old man, for speech 
alone loves to show its utmost vigour in old age if 
your own poets speak true : 

" All young men's hearts are with thick darkness filled, 
But age experienced has much more to say, 
More wise and learned than untaught youth." 

" * Thus among yourselves honey drops from 
Nestor's tongue ; and the Trojan orators emit a 
certain voice called Lirioessa, that is a florid 
speech, for if I remember right, flowers are called 
Liria. Now that Hercules, or speech should 
draw men after him tied by their ears to his 
tongue, will be no cause of admiration to you, 
when you consider the near affinity of the tongue 
and the ears. Nor is his tongue contumeliously 
bored ; for I remember, said he, to have learned 
certain iambics out of your own comedians, one 
of which says 

" The tips of all prater's tongues are bored." 

And finally, as for us, we are of opinion that 
Hercules accomplished all his achievements by 
speech; and, having been a wise man, he con- 
quered mostly by persuasion ; we think his arrows 
were keen razors, easily shot and penetrating the 


souls of men ; whence you have, among you, the 
expression of winged words.' Hitherto spoke the 

This beautiful and eloquent description of 
the power and strength of eloquence by a Gaul, 
is no faint picture of the advancement and ac- 
quirement of the Gauls in literature at the early 
period of the second century of the Christian era, 
for Lucian lived in the reigns of Adrian, Anto- 
ninus, Commodus, and Severus, from A. D. 124, 
to 214. This Gaul showed himself not only a 
wise man, and a philosopher, but an accomplish- 
ed scholar, well acquainted with the Greek au- 
thors, and even their poets and dramatic writers. 
It cannot be said that all this knowledge and po- 
lish, might have been introduced by the Roman 
conquests, for that would rather have introduc- 
ed the Latin ; they became acquainted with the 
Greek authors through the colony of Greeks 
settled at Marseilles. If, therefore, the Gauls 
were thus polished, the Britons were equally 
so, for Csesar tells us they were more learned than 
the Gauls, and the children of the latter were sent 
to Britain to be educated. Csesar indeed called 
them all barbarians ; but his own accounts of the 
Celtse, ill accord with a state of ignorance or low 
civilization, but rather establishes for them an 


advance in learning, and the arts and sciences of 
civilized society, very little behind the Romans 
themselves. The ships of the Veneti astonished 
the Romans, who, until then had never seen any 
so large or capable of conveying so large a cargo ; 
even in the art of war they were only exceeded 
by their Roman conquerors ; and had their polity 
of government been differently constituted, had 
they been governed by a single sovereign, instead 
of so many petty princes, who, as Tacitus tells 
us more than once, were conquered in detail, the 
result of the contest might have been very dif- 

In the preface to Vallancey's Essay, 177^, p-v. 
he mentions an altar to the Tyrian Hercules, dis- 
covered by Dr. Todd, at Colchester in Essex, 
with this inscription : 





Herculi Tyrio Divina Dona Archi Sacerdotis, 
vel per summum sacerdotum offer enda. * The 
oblation of the high priest to the Tyrian Hercules. 9 


On the sides are engraved bulls' heads with gar- 
lands and sacrificing instruments." 

From the whole tendency of these statements 
it is very clear that Hercules of the Phenicians 
and of the Gauls was the same. 

This Hercules, or Eracleis, was a very embar- 
rassing sort of individual, somewhat of a deified 
harlequin, whose club performed more wonderful 
exploits than the wooden sword of the motley hero. 
The Greeks borrowed him also from .the Pheni- 
cians. I am inclined to hope the following defi- 
nition of his true origin will, at all events have 
the character of probability. 

Hercules, or the larcul of the Phenicians, was 
an officer, and not an individual. The Phe- 
nicians (Tyrians) having conquered and colonized 
Spain, the Islands of Britain, and Gaul, and 
formed settlements in other places, found it ne- 
cessary to appoint a general governor of these 
countries to administer their laws, command 
their armies, and protect their trade. This officer 
they denominated J<x/t cut the defender, keeper, 
guard, or protector of the west ; J<x/i, the west, cul, 
keeper, protector, defender. The mystery of this 
extraordinary personage is thus made clear and 


Many individuals filled this offic^fcduring the 
long 1 continuance of Phenician domination in the 
west, and their combined atchievements were the 
foundation of the fable of the labours of Her- 
cules. The Greeks supposing the larcool to be a 
sole personage instead of a succession of indivi- 
duals invested with great power and extensive 
authority, and dazzled by the splendor and mul- 
tiplicity of his exploits, made him one of their 
own divinities. 

It is also probable that the Tyrians placed their 
western dominions under the protection of Baal, 
or Apollo, and on the occasion gave him the title 
of Baal lar Cul, or Baal the protector of the 
west, and thus arose the worship of the Tyrian 
Hercules. We find him worshipped in Britain as 
Baal tuad cadreach, and other titles, which jus- 
tify the presumption of surmise. 

Geryon, the giant conquered by Hercules, was 
also a personification of a people inhabiting the 
barn^s of the Garonne, conquered by one of the 
larcool of the Phenicians. The giant is repre- 
sented by Virgil, as having robbed Hercules 
of his cattle, upon which the hero slew him, 
and made prize of his herds, and sent them to 
Greece. The Garonne, as appears before, is 


, and the people dwelling on 

this river having made inroads into the Phenician 
colony, the larcool plundered them and made 
booty of their cattle in reprisal. 

Though somewhat out of place, I will here 
explain what was meant by the mysterious Riphean 
mountains and Hyrcinian forests, the site of 
either of which no one has even attempted to de- 

The term Riphean being general, might, and 
no doubt was, applied by the Phenicians to all grey 
rocky barren ridges of mountains, in their lan- 
guage, ;i)<xb<xc, grey, and eJje<xr>, hard, rocky, 
barren, is pronounced Rephean, therefore, the 
Riphean mountains meant all ridges of that de- 

The Hyrcinian oak forests were all the forests 


of the remote west, as the words J<x/i, west, 
remote, import. 



The Phenicians gave names to the countries and prominent 
features in the Mediterranean and Spain, which are all ex- 
plicable and expressive in Gaelic Many collated Tyre 
Palcetyre Sidon Palmyra Italy Sardinia Corsica 
Baleares Malta the promontories of Rusadir, in Africa 
Scombraria Charidemum, and Damium, in Spain Calpe 
Abeila Cadiz Barlengas Londobris, $*c. The antient 
people of Spain Lacetani, Cosetani, fyc. The Rivers 
of Spain Andara, Sfc. fyc. all Gaelic names Collation of 
the speech in the Pcenulus of Plantus, from Vallancey 
Phenician, Carthaginian, and Gaelic, the same language. 

It has been well observed by Vallancey : 
" Among the various expedients by which learned 
men have tried to clear up the mists that hang 
over the early accounts of all nations, none has 
been so generally approved in theory, or so suc- 
cessful, as that which makes identity or remark- 
able similarity of language, manners, and religious 
observances, its principal foundation. Both an- 



tient and modern critics, proceeding upon this 
plan, have made such deductions from very scanty 
premises, as almost challenge the certainty of 
strict demonstration."* 

"It is unreasonable to suppose that the proper 
names of men, places, rivers, &c. were originally 
imposed in an arbitrary manner, without regard 
to properties, circumstances, or particular occur- 
rences, we should rather think, that in the ear- 
liest period, and especially when the use of letters 
were unknown, a name usually conveyed a brief 
history of the thing signified, and thus recorded, 
as it were by a method of artificial memory ; ma- 
nifest and numerous instances of this are the pa- 
triarchal names recorded by Moses."t 

IT has already been stated that the Phenicians, 
the first discoverers of the British Islands, gave 
them their original names, and also conferred the 
subordinate denominations, on the smaller is- 
lands, promontories, estuaries, mountains, ri- 
vers, &c. It will naturally be objected, and 
justly, that the Phenicians before they had ap- 

* Vallancetfs Introduction to the vindication of Irish His- 
tory, p. 6. 

f Ibid. 


proached the British coasts had discovered, and 
of course named the countries situated on the 
coasts of the Mediterranean, with the islands, pro- 
montories, estuaries, rivers, mountains, and straits 
thereof, and also the coasts of Spain, Portugal, and 
Gaul. It may, therefore, be necessary before it 
will be admitted, that the Gael and Phenicians 
were the same people that there should be an 
equally striking conformity and analogy, in the 
Gaelic language, between the meaning of those 
names, which are acknowledged generally, and 
almost universally, to have been conferred by that 
people, as of those of the British Islands and Gaul. 
This is such obvious and just criticism, that I 
would say if we do not find those names in the 
Gaelic etymons, exactly descriptive and accord- 
ant with their peculiar situation, character, and 
circumstances, in so striking and palpable a 
manner, as scarcely to admit of question or 
doubt ; the names of Britain and Gaul being 
Gaelic, only prove an identity between the inha- 
bitants of those countries, as different branches 
of the Gael, but do not go far enough to estab- 
lish an identity, or even a connection between 
them and the Phenicians. But, if the names of 
the coasts and islands of the Mediterranean and 
of Spain, or a great majority of them, are evident- 
ly and palpably Gaelic, we may fairly, and without 

100 THE GAEL. 

encroachment, conclude that language to be the 
genuine remains of the antient Phenician tongue, 
and the Celtse, colonies of that enterprizing peo- 
ple, whose merchants were princes, and the ho- 
nourable of the earth. 

It will not be expected that every name to be 
found in the Mediterranean, or in Spain, should 
be explained, or even be capable of being rendered 
into Gaelic ; some, no doubt, had a different 
origin, nor would it be advisable to fatigue the 
reader by an unnecessary detail of etymologies, as 
the most striking will sufficiently establish the de- 
sired position ; the mind becomes bewildered in- 
stead of being instructed by injudiciously mul- 
tiplying proofs. The collation of all the names 
might and would be useful in a gazetteer, or geo- 
graphical work, but here would be out of place. 

We will begin by first examining the names 
of the cities of the coast of Phenicia itself and 
first the chief city. 

Tyre XJfi The land, or the country, by way 
of eminence, the home of the Phenicians, their 
pride and glory like Rome to the Romans. Tyre 
was called THE CITY. 2Djt is sometimes spelled 
, in antient MSS. Christian Mattheus, de- 


rives Tyre from the Hebrew "Vtf which signifies 
a stone or rock, because it was built on a rock. 

Paletyre, or Paletyrus The old city of Tyre 
on the continent, of the materials of which 
Alexander, for the most part, constructed the 
pier to the island. 

Sidon, or Saida /"<xJb<x a seat, or site. Sidon, 
though second to Tyre in glory and greatness, is 
said to have been the elder city, and the first set- 
tlement or seat of the Phenicians on the Medi- 

Palmyra p<il<x^, the palace rotye, of pleasure, 
or diversion pronounced Palmire. Tadmor is 
t<xj house and roo/i, great the great house, 
or palace. 

A few of the countries may now be mentioned. 

t, corn t<xlam, country the land of 
corn, or agriculture, pronounced Itala. 

The Tiber. This is evidently the Gaelic and 
Phenician tJbajt, a well, fountain, spring, stream. 

Dalmatia b<xl, a share, a tribe, the country 


102 THE GAEL. 

possessed by a tribe rocJt, good, excellent. 
The excellent, or good share, or allotment, pro- 
nounced Dalmait. 

Sardinia /-<x;i*>, the greater or larger 
island ; the greater island with reference to Cor- 
sica, pronounced Sardinis. 

Corsica co/t/-oib, the coast, or the island near 
the coast, 

Baleares ba, cows, or cattle le<x/i, the sea 
the cows of the sea, probably from their appear- 
ance from ship-board. Diodorus Siculus derives 
it erroneously from BaAAav, to throw, because 
the inhabitants were great slingers, they bore 
these names before the Greeks were navigators, 
from the first discoverers, the Phenicians. 

Malta, or Melita melt, banishment or the 
place of banishment. 

Promontorium Husadir, in Afric^ now called 
the Capo de Tres Forcas, in the kingdom of Fez, 
the first promontory, east of Ceuta. ^aab, red 
^ <xbac, sand, or dust. If any inquire what nation 
gave the name of Capo de Tres Forcas, the an- 
swer would be, without hesitation, the Spaniards ; 


the other name is as palpably the gift of the Phe- 

Promontorium Scombraria, in Spain, now 
called Cape Polos. Healthy Cape, or the Cape 
of good air, fgam, breathing ', or the lungs 
b;te<xt:, pure. Pure air, or breathing. 

Promontorium Charidemum now called 
Capo de Gates, in Grenada. The Cape of 
sheep pasture cao/i, sheep bMmai), feeding, or 

Promontorium Diamum Cape St. Martin, 
in Valentia. b7amui) pasturage. 

At the entrance into the Atlantic, we have the 
Rock of Gibraltar, whose antient name was 
Calpe, in Irish, catb a bald head. 

Abeila, the old name of Ceuta, the headland 
on the coast of Africa, opposite to Gibraltar, and 
with the latter form the mouth or entrance of the 
Mediterranean from the Atlantic. The literal 
meaning is her mouth a, her beH, mouth. 
No names could have been chosen more appro- 
priate than Calb and Abeila, to express the ex- 
act cirumstances of those two Capes. 

104 THE GAEL. 

Cadis or Gades the first great and glorious 
city, built by the Phenicians after entering the 
ocean c<xba^ honour, privilege, glory. 

JBarlengas A cluster of dangerous islands, a 
little to the north of the Tagus, only one of 
which is habitable, the rest are all bare rocks, 
looking like the black backs of enormous whales 
above the water. In the antient maps of D'An- 
ville, they are denominated Insultz Londobris. 
Neither of these names have any meaning, as far 
as I have been able to discover in the Portuguese, 
or any other language than the Gaelic. 

Berlengas, is b<x/</i death, or destruction, and 
tonga, of ships. 

Londobris, is long, a ship bo, of 
wreck, or breaking up, shipwreck islands. 

The old name of Cape Ortegal, was Trileucum 

G!' *" 1^ * 

Promontorium fromt/iJ, three leo%, marshes; 
from three marshy inlets which exactly answer 
the natural features of the place. 

There are many places along the coast to which 
is postfixed Briga, as Abobriga, Celtobriga, Ta- 
labriga, Mirobriga, Coimbriga, Lacobriga, Ceto- 


briga, Hierobriga, and some with the prefix, as Bri- 
gantium, all are derived from b/tJogac, hilly, which 
is pronounced Briga. 

Those names could not have been accidentally 
so descriptive, they must have been given by a 
people speaking the language which so clearly ex- 
presses their peculiar circumstances. There is no 
straining, cutting down, or changing letters or syl- 
lables, the words declare their origin as palpably 
as that Cape of Good Hope, or Desolation Bay, 
were names given by the English. 

The names of the antient people and rivers of 
Spain, taken from M. D'Anville's map, and un- 
doubtedly conferred by the Phenicians, when col- 
lated with the Gaelic, exhibit equally satisfactory 
evidence of the identity of that language with the 
Phenician, without an exception. 

Lacetani l<x)c, milk ; o, of ; tana, country. 
The country of milk. 

Cosetani co/% a fissure, or deep valley ; o, of; 
t<xn<x, country. The country of deep vallies. 

Varetani fe<x/i, grass ; o, of ; t<Xi?<i, country. 
Grassy country. 

Illercaones Jol, variety ; le<x/i, plains ; caonac, 
mossy. Mossy plains. 

106 THE GAEL. 

Edetani eJb, cattle ; o, of ; tana, country. 
The country of flocks and herds. 

Contestant ceai), heads ; tea^, hot ; tana, 
country. The high warm country ; tea^, is also 
south ; it may be the high south country. 

Bastitani baoj-te, rainy or wet ; tana, country 
ta fQ bao^te, it rains violently, is the common 
expression among the Irish at this day. Bastia, 
the capital of that country, is from the same root 
bao/% rain. 

Orretani oty, gold ; o, of ; tana, country. 
The country of gold. 

Bastuli B<xo/% rain ; tul, flood. The country 
of sudden floods, by means of rain ; or but, fisher- 
men with nets, now Biscay. 

Peni Phenicians. 

Turdetani tM/i, above ; b), or a little, next ; 
tana, country. The country next Cadiz. 

Celtici The Gael. 

Lusitani Wf 9 flowers , or herbs ; o, of ; tana. 
The country of herbs, plants, or flowers. 

Callaici caoHeac, narrow. The country next 
the sea, now called Tralos Montes, and Galicia, 
separated from the rest of Spain by mountains ; 
the narrow slip. 

Astures a/% a torrent, a mountain stream, or 
waterfall t)/i, country, or land. The land of 
torrents ; Asturias. 


Cantdbri ceai), heads ; tJ<x/i, high above \ b/0, 
a hill. The high mountainous country. 

Autrigones <xut/iuJ g, a wanderer, a man who 
leads a nomadic life, shepherds. 

Varduli p eoi/i, men ; but, fishers with nets 
fishermen, now called Guipuscoa, part of Biscay, 
or the sea coast. 

Turduli tM/i, above, or ; but, fishermen with 
nets ; the people who lived by fishery up the 
Guadalquiver, with nets or cJ/t, land, or country. 

These names are so accurately descriptive of 
the peculiar features of the country, or the em- 
ployment or habits of the inhabitants, that no can- 
did mind can, it is conceived, doubt that the peo- 
ple who gave those names, spoke the language in 
which they are so explicable. A collation of the 
names of the rivers of Spain, is noy given, al- 
though it appears sufficiently established, that 
the Gaelic, is the same language as that of 
the Phenicians, who are on all hands acknowledg- 
ed to have given names to the people of Spain, 
as well as to most of the countries, islands, pro- 
montories, and places in the Mediterranean sea, 
and the coasts of Spain and Portugal. 

108 THE GAEL. 


Andaro aban, river ; ba/ta, oaks. River of 

Ason af, a torrent ; aban, river \ a mountain 

Abono aban, or Avon. A river. 

Amies aba) I, dead, heavy. 

Allones al, stony ; aban, river. 

Bedon beb, fruit ; abar>, river. 

Bidassoa beb, fruit ; a^, a torrent ; ua, country. 

Balotta ba/i/<, death; lotac, wounding. 

Canero ce<xp, head ; e^oj, of ice. 

Coldelas col, neck or bay ; bJl, deluging ; &f, 
torrent. The deluging torrent of the hay. 

Deva bJ<xm<x/7, pure, clear, pellucid. Pro- 
nounced Devan. 

Del Sor perhaps ^o)/ie, east, branch of the 

Eo or Moranda eo, a salmon. 

Ester io e<x^, a cataract or waterfall. 

Fasorno f <x^, increasing ; <xb<xn, river. 

Guadiama or Anas aba/? ; river a)^, of tor- 

Guadalquiver or Bcetis beJt, double, twain, 
having two branches which again unite. 

Hea eac, a horse, or the moon ? 


Junco J, low, shallow ; urjgac, copper, brass. 
The shallow river of the copper mine. 

Jubia u<xm, cove, or inlet. Pronounced eube. 

Lequietio l<xJgJb, weak, small, puny, a brook. 
A small river or stream in Biscay. 

La Balotto b<x, cattle, j lot, washing. 

Llanes lean. A swampy plain. 

Lastres le<x^coJ/i, an arrow. 

Linares IJn, water, the sea ; <x/i, bounded or 
inclosed, a lake or river. 

Landrova lea/9, a swampy plain ; b/iuJm, a 
surface, a bark. Pronounced Landroov. 

Lezaro U^, strife or conflict j <x/i, of the slain 
or of slaughter. 

Masma no<x/-, handsome ; no<x, clean, pure. 

Mondaca m<xon, heroes ; be<xc<U/v wonderful ? 

Mondoneda m<xor?, heroes^ bon<xba^, unfortu- 
nate ?* 

* This river, and the Episcopal city in Galicia, takes their 
name from some event. I had proceeded thus far when . 
a friend, a Spanish officer, told me of a regiment 
of infantry, in Spain, now called Espinados Mondo- 
nedas ; of which there is the tradition that they were on 
guard about the person of the king, and there being an ex- 
tended conspiracy to murder the sovereign, the place was at- 
tacked by a numerous and overwhelming force, but was so 
well defended as to repulse the assailants and destroy most of 
them, but with so great a loss on the part of the guards, that out 

110 THE GAEL. 

Miera noJo^KXtr, misfortune. This name is, no 
doubt, derived from some event which happened 
at the river. 

Mendeo men, a mine ; beoJb, end or fountain. 
The stream from a mine. 

Mero mJo/i<xt, misfortune. 

Mintro, or Minius men, a mine. 

Nanza nean, a wave ; f <x, stream. 

Niembro neJmfyJg, insignificant, weak. 

Navia, or Navius n<xom<xb, holy, sanctified. 

Orio oty, gold ; Job, chain or collar. 

Odiel oball, deaf. 

Oro, Rio del oty, gold. Golden river. 

Pilas p<x)l, a pavement, stony bottom; <x^, 

Pravia p/xb, rough, sudden, precipitate \ )a, 



of three hundred, only thirty survived. They were asked what 
recompense should be given them, and demanded that their 
regiment should ever be the royal guards of Spain, which 
has been the case ever since. Mondonedas has no meaning 
in Spanish, nor is there any period fixed for the event, it 
must be, therefore, one of the events of remote antiquity, 
when the Gaelic was the language of the country. As the 
name Maondonadas is very appropriate to the legend, I was 
reading over this collation to the officer above alluded to, 
when he was struck with the extraordinary circumstance, and 
told me that in Spain no one has an idea of the meaning of 
the word, although all are acquainted with the story. . 


Puenta Riodela puJ/ice, a point. 

Piedra pJt, a dyke, or small hollow ; /KX, mov- 
ing, or a stream running through a small ravine. 

Riba de Sella ^eUcu?, a rill, or small stream. 

Recieda ;ie<xc, sudden, quick ; <x)b, cold. 

Romalosa fioJm, soil, earth ; lu<ty-c<xb, loosing, 

Ratonejo /i<xt, motion ; on, cause. 

Saja px, a stream, ; Ja, an island or district. 

Tambre, or Tamara t<xm, gentle ; b/i), slope. 

Tina del Estu, Tina Major tin, to melt, 

Tinto tJ/7, to melt ; to, silently. 

Urumea u)/te, fresh green ; mMb<xr>, meadow, 
or meag, earth or ground. The river of green 

Urola cm, earth ; jioHb, a hill or mountain. 

Ulla aaJUeob, lamentation, wailing. 

Unna uan, froth, foam. 

V&dra reb, calm ; /i<x, moving. 

Ybaychalval ), her ; ba, cattle ; c<xl<x, port ; 
j:cil, plenty. The river or port for the export of 
much cattle. 



Ebro eb<x/i, dirt, mud. Muddy river. 
Turia bu/i, stream, river, water. 
Xuvar or Tucro tu<\, hatchet, battle-axe j 
c/io, red, bloody. 


Tagus t<xo), mild, gentle. 
Munda rouJn, a hill; *><*, fish. A mountain 
stream with fish. 

Durius bu/i, water, river, stream. 

These names are so palpably Gaelic, that I feel 
I shall perhaps annoy by using any further argu- 
ment in support of the identity of that language 
with the Phenician. I shall, therefore, in this 
part of the subject, produce no more etymologies 
further than to conclude with the celebrated 
collation of the Carthaginean speeches in the 
Poenulus of Plautus, published by General Val- 

The General has been accused of having bor- 
rowed this extraordinary discovery, without ac- 
knowledgment, from the MS. of O'Neachtan, a 


celebrated Irish scholar. I regret to say with too 
much truth, the MS. from which he took it, with 
his own autograph written therein, was lately in 
the possession of a friend of mine. 

Vallancey, however, first gave it to the world ; 
and conferred a greater benefit than O'Neachtan 
himself, who allowed his discovery to remain un- 

There can be no doubt that the speeches in 
the Poenulus are Gaelic. The story is simply 
told, and the feelings and anxiety of Hanno, 
well and eloquently expressed. The substance of 
the story is given in the following translation of 
the Argument. 

A certain Carthaginian youth having been 
stolen by pirates, was carried to Calydonia in 
CEt^lia, and sold to an old citizen, who 
adopted him as his son, and, dying, left him his 
heir. The youth loved an amiable young wo- 
man, his relative, she was the daughter of his 
his uncle, but he knew it not, for pirates had also 
taken his two little girls, with their nurse, from 
his country-house ; and having brought them to 
Calydonia, they were sold to Lycus, a procurer, 
in Anactorium, a town in Acarnania. The youth 



being unable to obtain his beloved from her 
owner, called in aid the counsel of Milphio, 
his servant, and laying a snare for Lycus, had 
him condemned for theft. In the mean time 
a discovery was made that the girls were noble 
Carthaginians, and their father Hanno, who had 
sought them in every country, came and acknow- 
ledged them, and gave the elder of them in mar- 
riage to the son of his brother. 


Agorastocles . a Carthaginian youth. 

Milphio a Servant. 

Adelphasium&Anterastilis, Courtesans. 

Lycus the Pimp, or Procurer. 

Anthemonides a Soldier, or Knight. 

Hanno a Carthaginian. 

Giddeneme the Nurse, &c. 


Fifth Act, First Scene. 

Nythalonim ualon uth si corathissima comsyth 
Chi-m lach chunyth mumys tyal mycthibarii imischi 


Lipho canet hyth bynuthii ad a? din bynuthii. 
Byrnarob syllo homalonim uby misyrthoho 
Bythlym mothym noctohii uelechanti dasmachon 
Yssidele brin thyfel yth chylys chon. them liphul 
Uth. bynim ysdibur thynno cuth nu Agorastocles 
Ythe maneth ihy chirsse lycoth sith naso 
Bynni id chil luhili gubulin lasibit thym 
Bodyalyt herayn nyn nuys lym monchot lusim 
Exanolim uolanus succuratim mistim atticum esse 
Concubitum a bello cutin beant lalacant chona 

enus es 
Huiec silic panesse athidmascon alem induberto 

felono buthume. 
Celttim comucro lueni, at enim auoso uber hent 

hyach Aristoclem 
Et te se aneche nasoctelia elicos alemus duberter 

mi comps uespti 
Aodeanec lictor bodes iussum limnimcolus. 


Deos deasque veneror, qui hanc urbem colunt ut 

quod de mea re 
Hue veneri te venerim, measque ut gnatas et mei 

fratris filium 
Reperirem esiritis : id vostram fidem quee mihi 

surreptsc sunt. 
Et fratris filium. qui mihi ante hac hospes anti- 

madas fuit 

i 2 

116 THE GAEL. 

Eum fecisse aiunt : sibi quod fachmdum fuit ejus 

Hie predicant esse Agorastoclem. Deum hospi- 

talem ac tesseram 
Mecum fero. in hisce habitare monstratus regi- 

Hos percontabor, qui hue egreduintur foras. 

Bochart* thinks these lines of Plautus are part- 
ly Punic and partly Libyan : the six last he does 
not attempt to transcribe or translate, but conjec- 
tures that they are a repetition of the ten first, in 
the Lybian language ; the ten first he says are 
Punic, and he thus describes them in the He- 
brew : 

Na eth eljonim veeljonoth sechorath iismecun zoth 
Chi malachai jitthemu : maslia middabarehen iski. 
Lephurcanath eth beni eth jad udi ubenothui 
Berua rob sellahem eljonim ubimesuratebem. 
Beterem moth anoth othi helech Antidamarchon 
Is sejada il ; Beram tippel eth chele sechinatim 


Eth ben amis dibbur tham nocot nave Agorastocles 
Otheim anuthi hu chior .seeli choc : zoth nose 
Binni ed chi lo haelle gebulim laseboth tham 

* Phaleg, ch. 2. 


Bo di all thera inna ; Hinno, esal immancar lo 

Which lines Bochart thus translates into Latin. 

Rogo Deos et Deas qui hanc regionem tuentur 
Ut consilia mea compleantur : Prosperum sit ex 

ductu eorum negotium meum. 
Ad liberationem filii mei manu prsedonis, et filia- 

rum mearum. 
Dii per spiritum multum qui estis in ipsis, et per 

providentiam suam 
Ante obitum diversari apud me solebat Antida- 

Vir mihi familiaris; sedis eorum coetibusjunctus 

est, ; quorum habitatio est in caligine. 
Filium ejus constans fama est ibi fixisse sedem 

Agorastoclem (nomine) 
Sigillum hospitii mei est tabula sculptaj cujus sculp- 

tura est Deus meus : id fero. 
Indicavit mihi testis eum habitare in his finibus. 
Venit aliquis per portam hanc ; Ecce eum ; ro- 

gabo nunquid noverit nomen (Agorastoclis.) 

118 THE GAEL. 

We will now collate this speech with the Irish. () 


Nyth al o nim ua lonuthsicorathissi me com syth (5) 
Chim lach chumyth mum ys tyal mycthi barii im 


* N'iaith all o nimh uath lonnaithe ! socruidhse 

me comsith. 
Omnipotent much dreaded Deity of this country ! 

assuage my troubled mind, 

IRISH verbum verbo. 

* O all nimh* n'iaith, (1) lonnaith, (2) uath ! socruidhse me 

com sith 
O mighty Deity of this country, powerful, terrible ! quiet 

me with rest. 

* See O'Brien's, O'Reilly's, and Armstrong's Dictionaries for these 
words : 

(1) iath, land, territory, asiath o neachach, a part of the county of Wa- 

(2) uath, dread, terrible. Lh. O Br. O'Reilly. 

(a) The Irish is given here, after Vallancey, in the Roman character, 
in which letter h, after, has the same power as a point over, a conso- 
nant, by eclipsing c* rendering it mute, or changing m into v. 

(b) We have a remarkable Irish poem written in the thirteenth century, 
beginning much in the same manner-^- 

" Athair chaidh choimsidh neimhe" 


* Chimi lach chuinigh ! muini is toil, miocht bei- 

ridh iar mo scith 

(thou) the support of feeble captives l(n)- being now 
exhausted with fatigue, of thy free will guide 
to my children. 


Lipho can ethyth by mitliii ad sedan binuthii 

Bj r nar ob syllo homal o iiim ! ubymis isyrthoho. 


t Liomhtha can ati bi mitchead eadan beannaithe, 
O let my prayers be perfectly acceptable in thy 

IRISH verbum verbo. 

* Chuinigh lach (1) chimithe; is toil, muini beiridh (2) 

A support of weak captives ; be thy will to instruct (me) 

to obtain my children, 
Iar mo scith (3) 
After my fatigue. 

f Can (4) ati liomtha (5) mitche bi beannaithe ad eadan, (6) 
Let it come to pass, that my earnest prayers be blessed 

before thee, 

(1) time, cimidh, cimeadh, prisoners, cimim, to enslave. O Br. O.R. 

(2) iochd, children, miocht, my*hildren. O Br. O. R. 

(3) Marique terraque usque quaque quaeritat. Plant. Prolog, lin. 105. 

(4) conadi,\et it So happen. M.S.S. conadhaire, therefore. O. R. 

(5) itche, a petition, reqiiest; liomtha, pronounced limpha. O Br. O. R. 
(0) a(V cadan, in thy face, cadan, the front of any thing. O. Br. O. R. 

() Captives , his daughters. 

120 THE GAEH. 

* Bior riar ob siladh umhal ; o nimh! ibhirii a frotlia I 
An inexhaustible fountain to the humble ; O 

Deity ! let me drink of its streams ! 


Byth lym mo thym noctothii nel ech an ti daisc 

Ys i de lebrim thyfe lyth chy ly& chon temlyph 



t Beith liom ! mo'thime noctaithe, neil ach tan ti 
daisic mac coinne 

Forsake me not! my earnest desire is now dis- 
closed, which is only that of recovering my 
daughters ; 

IRISH verbum verbo. 

* Bior nar ob siladh umhal ; O Nimh ! ibhim a frotha, 

A fountain denied not to drop to the humble; O Deity 

that I may drink of its streams. 

f Beith liom ! mo (1) thime (2) noctaithe, niel ach an ti (3) 
Be with me ! my fears being disclosed, I have no other in- 
tention but 
daisic, (4) macoinne. (5) 

of recovering my daughters. 

-. , 

(1) tim, time, fear, dread. O B . O. R. also pride, estimation, weak- 

(2) nocdaigJie, and nocta, naked, open, disclosed. O Br. O. R. 

(3) ti, design, intentior. Lh. do rabhadarar ti, they intended. Nehcm. 
iv. 7. noch do bhi ar ti lamh do chur, who designed to lay hands. Est. vi. 2. 

(4) aisioc, restitution : aisiocadh to restore. Lh. O Br. O. R. 

(5) mac choinne daughters ; macoamh, a youth, a girl. O Br. O. R. 


* Is i de leabhraim tafach leith, chi lis con team- 

pluibh ulla 
This was my fervent prayer, lamenting their mis- 

fortunes in thy sacred temples. 


Uth bynim ys diburt hynn ocuthnu Agorastocles 
Ythe man eth ihychirsae lycoth sith nasa. 


t Uch bin nim i is de beart inn a ccomhnuithe 

Agorastocles ! 
O bounteous Deity ! it is reported here dwelleth 

Agorastocles ! 

IRISH verbum verbo. 

* tafach (1) a (2) leith, is i de leabhraim, (3) hi lis (4) 
this particular request, was what I made, bewailing their 


con (5) ulla teampluibh. 
in (thy) sacred temples. 

t Uch bin nim ! is de beart inn, accomhnuithe Agorastocles 
O sweet Deity I it is said in this place, dwells Agorastocles 

(1) tafac craving, also exhortation. Lh. O Br. O. R. 

(2) a leith, distinct, particular, ibid. 

(3) ci, to lament ; a mhacain na ce, lament not young men. ibid. 

(4) Us, evil, mischief, ibid. 

(5) ulla, a place of devotion, ibid. 


* Itche mana ith a chithirsi ; leicceath sith nosa ! 
Should my request appear just, here let my dis- 
quietudes cease ! 


Buini id chillu ili guby lim la si bithym 
Bo dyalyther aynnyn mysly mono chetl us im. 


t Buaine na iad cheile ile : gabh Horn an la so bi- 

thim' ! 
Let them be no longer concealed ; O that I may 

this day find my daughters ! 

IRISH verbum verbo. 

*mana(l) itche a chithirsi (2) ith; nosa (3) leicceath 

if the cause of my request should seem to you to be just ; 

now grant (me) peace, 
f na cheile iad (4) buaine (5) ile ; gabh Horn (6) bithm' an 

la so ! 
do not conceal them for ever; O that I may find my 

daughters this day ! 

( 1 ) mana, a cause or occasion. O Br. O. R. 

(2) idh or ith, good, just. O Br. O. R. 

(3) leicceadh or legeadh, to permit. O Br. O. R. 

(4) buaine, perpetuity, continuance. O Br. O. R. 

(5) ile, a diversity, a difference, partially. O Br. O R. 

(6) lithe, females, belonging to the female sex. O Br. Hanno here 
prays they may not be partially concealed, i. e. that he may discover bis 
nephew, Agorastocles, as well as his daughters, and then breaks out with 
the following ejaculation, respecting his daughters particularly. 


* Bo dileachtach nionath n'isle, mon cotlioil us im 

they will be fatherless, and preys to the worst of 

men, unless it be thy pleasure I should find them. 


EC anolim uolanus succur ratim misti atticum esse 
Con cubitu mabel lo cutin bean tla la cant chona 

t Ece all o mm uath lonnaithe ! socair-ratai 

mitche aiticimse 
But mighty and terrible Deity, look down upon 

me ! fulfil the prayers I now offer unto thee, 

IRISH verbum verbo. 

* dileachtach bo nionath n'isle ; mona codthoil 
being orphans, they will be the prey of the very dregs 

of men ; unless it be thy will 
us (1) im 

(to give) tydings about them. 
f all o nim lonnaithe, uath Ece I (2) ratai socair. mitche (3) 

O great Deity, powerful, terrible, Behold (me) I prosper 

with success my petition I ask. 

(1) us, news, tydings. O Br. O. R. 

(2) rathai, to make prosperous. Lh. O Br. O R, socair, prosperity, 

(3) aitichim, to pray or entreat, ibid. 


* Con cuibet meabaii le cuta bean, tlait le caint 
con inisis, 

without effeminate deceit or rage, but with the 
utmost humility, I have represented my unfor- 
tunate situation. 


Huie csi lee pan esse, athi dm as con alem 

in dubart felo no buth ume 
Celt um co mu cro lueni ! ateni mauo suber r ben- 

thyach Agorastoclem. 


t Huch ! caisi leicc pian esse athi dam, as con 

ailim in dubart felo 
Ogh ? the neglect of this petition will be death to 

me ! let so secret disappointment 

IRISH verbum verbo. 

* Con (1) cuibet (2) meabaii le cuta (3) bean ; le tlait c'aint 

inisis con (4) 
Without deceitful fraud or effeminate rage : with humble 

speech I have told my meaning, 
f Huch ! (5) leicc caisi as con ailim, pian esse (6) aith (7) 

dhamhna bioth 

Alas ! the neglect of the cause I have set before thee, would 
be the pains of death to me, let me not 

(1) con pro gan, old MSS. (tyvuibeth, fraud, cheat. (3) cutha, 
rage, fury. (4) con, sense, meaning. O Br. (5) leicc, neglect. O Br. 
(6) ess, death. Lh. O Br. (1) aith, quick, sudden. Lh. O.K. 


no buth ume 

befall me. 

* Celt uaim c'a mocro luani ! athini me an sublia 

ar beanuath Agorastocles. 
Hide not from me the children of my loins ! and 

grant me the pleasure of recovering Agorastocl es. 


Ex te se anechc na soctelia eli cos alem as du- 

bert ar mi comps, 
Uesptis Aod eanec lie tor bo desiussum lim nirn 

co lus. 

IRISH verbum verlo. 

uaim an feile dobart (1) 

meet any secret mischief. 

* Celt (2) c'a uaim (3) cro mo luani ; aithin me an sublia (4) 

Hide not from me the children of my loins ; and grant me 

the pleasure of recovering 
ar Agorastocles. (5) 

(1) dobart, mischief. O Br. (2) cro, children. Dichu go lion cro. 
i. e. go lion clann. Lh. (3) cha for m, old MSS ; frequently used by 
the old Irish at this day ; as, cha deanan, I will not do it. (4) bea- 
nughadh, to recover ; do bhean se ar tiomlan, he recovered the whole. 
Lh. (5) His nephew. 


* Ece te so a Neach na soichle uile cos ailim as 

dubairt ; 

Behold O Deity, these are the only joys I earn- 
estly pray for ; 

ar me compais, 

take compassion on me, 

tis bidis Aodh eineac lie Tor, ba desiughim le 
mo nirnh co lus. 

and grateful fires on stone towers, will I ordain 
to blaze to heaven. 

IRISH verbum verbo. 

* Ece a Neach (6) ete so uile cos na soichle (7) ailim as 
(8) dubairt ; 

behold> O Deity, this is every consideration of joy, I earn- 
estly pray for ; 

ar me (1) compais, 

take pity on me, 

f is bidis (2) eineac (3) Aodh ar (4) lie tor ba desiughim co 

and there shall be grateful fires on stone towers, which I 
will prepare to burn 

le mo nimh. 

to my deity. 

(1) neach, i. e. neamhach, a heavenly spirit. O Br. (2) ailim, to pray 
or entreat. Lh. O Br. (3) dubairt, an earnest prayer. O Br. 

(4) chompais, compassion, pity. O Br. O. R. 

(5) eineach, bountiful, liberal. O Br. O. R. 

(6) Aodh, fire. Lh. O Br. O. R. 

(7) lie, leiccy a stone j Hoc, a great stone. O Br. O R. 



MILP. Adibo hosce, atque appellabo Punice j 
Si respondebunt, Punice pergam loqui : 
Si non : turn ad horum mores linguam vertero. 
Quid ais tu ? ecquid adhuc commeministi Punice ? 

AG. Nihil adepol. Nam qui scire potui, die mihi, 
Qui illinc sexennis perierim Karthagine ? 

HAN. Pro Di immortales! plurimi ad liunc 

Periere pueri liberi Karthagine. 

MIL. Quid ais tu? AG. Quid vis? MIL. Vin' 
appellem hunc Punice ? AG. An scis ? MIL. Nullus 
me est hodie Poenus Punior. 

AG. Adi atque appella quid velit, quid venerit, 
Qui sit quojatis, unde sit : ne parseris. 

MIL. Avo ! quojatis estis ? aut quo ex oppido ? 

HAN. Hanno Muthumballe bi Chaedreanech. 


Hanno Muthumbal bi Chathar dreannad. 

I am Hanno Muthumbal* dwelling at Carthage. 

* muty, the seataai), fame; b'aal, lord, or chief, or 
commander. Hanno the renowned sea captain. 

128 THE GAEL. 

Chathar dreannad, signifies the good city ; we 
have already shewn from good authority, that 
it was also called Cathar agadh. See the word 

Lambinus reads this passage thus : Hanno Mu- 
thum Balle beccha edre anech. 

Reinesius has it thus : Muthum talis ben chadre 

Which he translates, Deum vel Dominum Averni, 
Ditem, seu Plutonem Muth, id est Pluto Phoe- 
nicibus, seu domicilium mortis. 

That muth in the Punic and meuth in the Irish, 
signifies death, destruction, decay, &c. we have 
shown in the preceding collation of the Punica 
Maltese words with the Irish ; but that Mu- 
thumbal was Punice a proper name, is evident 
from a Punic medal now in the choice cabinet 
of the Earl of Charlemont, round the exergue of 
which is the word MVTHVMBALLVS, and on the re- 
verse, the city of Carthage, with some Phoenician 
characters. This is also a strong proof of the 
early introduction of the Roman letters among 
the Carthaginians, and a sufficient reason, in 
my opinion, that no other characters have been 
found in use amongst the ancient Irish than the 
old Roman or Etruscan, except the contrac- 
tions which are to be found in the Chaldean, 
Coptic, &c. 


AG. Quid ait ? MIL. Hannonem sese ait Kar- 
thagine Carthaginiensem Muthumballis nTium. 

HAN. Avo. MIL. Salutat. HAN. Donni. 

MIL. Doni volt tibi dare hinc nescio quid, au- 
din* pollicerier ? 

Avo ! donni ! 

Alas! most unfortunate that I am. 

AbJio, pronounced avo, and donaidhe, the corn- 
par, of dona, unfortunate, are interjections 
common among the Irish to this day. 

AG. Saluta hunc rursus Punice verbis meis. 
MIL. A.VO donni ! hie mihi tibi inquit verbis 

HAN. Me bar bocca ! 


a ma babacht ! O my sweet youth, (mean- 
ing his nephew.) 

MIL. Istuc tibi sit potius quam mihi. AG. Quid 

MIL. Miseram esse prsedicat buccam sibi 

Fortasse medicos nos esse arbitrarier. 
AG. Si ita est. Nega esse, nolo ego errare 

MIL. Audi tu rufen nuco istam. AG. Sic volo, 

Profecto verar cuncta huic expedirier. 


130 THE GAEL. 

Roga, nunquid opus sit? MIL. Tu qui zonam 

non habes 
Quid in hanc venistis urbem, aut quid quseritis ? 

HAN. Muphursa ! AG. Quid ait ? HAN. Mi 
vule chianna ! 


Mo thuirse ! Mo buile chionna ! 

O my grief! My sorrow is of long standing. 

AG. Quid venit ? 
MIL. Non audis ? mures Africanos praedicat 

In pompam ludis dare se velle aedilibus. 
HAN. Laech la chananim liminichot. 


Luach le cheannaighim Horn miocht. 

At any price I would purchase my children. 
MIL. Ligulas canalis ait se advexisse et nuces : 

Nunc orat, operam ut des sibi, ut vea veneant. 
AG. Mercator credo est. HAN. Is am ar uinam. 


Is am ar uinneam ! 
This is the time for resolution ! 

AG. Quid est ? 
HAN. Palum erga dectha f * 

Ba Horn earga deacta. 


I will submit to the dictates of heaven. 

AG. Milphio, quid nunc ait. 
MIL. Pal as vendundas sibi ait et mergas datas, 
Ut hortum fodiat, atque ut frumentum metat. 
Ad messim credo missus hie quidem tuam. 
AG. Quid istuc ad me ? MIL. Certiorem te esse 


Ne quid clam furtive accepisse censeas. 
HAN. Ma phannium sucorahim. 


me fuinim ; socaraidhim ; 

that I may hereafter finish my fatigue ! and that 
I may now be at rest ! 

MIL. hem ! cave sis feceris 

Quod hie te orat. AG. Quid ait ? aut quid orat ? 
MIL. Sub cratim uti jubeas sese supponi, atque 


Lapides imponi multos, ut sese neces. 
HAN. Gan ebel Balsameni ar a san. 


Guna bil Bal-samen ar a son ! 
O that the good Bal-samhan may favor them ! 
Bal-samhan, i. e. Beal the Sun, as explained 
before at the word Bal. 

AG. Quid ait ? 
MIL. Non Hercle nunc quidem quicquam scio. 


HAN. Atut scias nunc, de hinc latine jam loquar. 
&c. &c. 

In the Third Scene of the Fifth Act of Plautus, 
where the plot begins to open are two more lines 
of the Punic language, and bearing a greater 
affinity with the old Irish than any of the former. 
In this scene the old Nurse recollects Hanno. 


GID, Quis pultat? MIL. Qui te proximus est. 

GID. Quid vis ? MIL. Eho, 
Novistin' tu illunc tunicatum hominem, qui siet. 

GID. Nam quern ego aspicio ? pro supreme 

Jupiter, herus meus hie quidem est 
Mearumalumnarum pater ; Hanno Carthaginensis. 

MIL. Ecce autem mala, preestigiator hie quidem 

Poenus probus est 
Perduxit omnis ad suam sententiam. GID. O mi 

here, salve Hanno, 

Insperatussime mihi, tuisque filiis, salve atque eo 
Mirari noli, neque me contemptarier. Cognoscin* 

Ancillam tuam ? POE. Novi, sed ubi sunt meae 

gnatae ? id scire expeto. 

AGO. Apud sedem Veneris. POE. Quid ibi fa- 
qiunt, die mihi ? 


AGO. ^4phrodisia 9 * hodie Veneris est festus dies. 

Oratum ierurit deam, ut 
Sibi esset propitia. GID. Pol satis scio impetra- 

runt, quando hie, hie 
Adest. AGO. Eo an hujus sunt illae filise. GID. 

Ita ut prsedicas. 
Tua pietas nobis plane auxilio fuit. Cum hue ad- 

venisti hodie in ipso 
Tempore. Namque hodie earum mutarentur ^o- 

Facerentque indignum genere qusestum corpore. 

POE. Handone silli hanun bene silli in mustine. 
ftanbone ^)IU barmnot bene p/lU ]n\ muftlne 
Whenever Venus proves kind, or grants a favour, 

she grants it linked or chained with misfortunes. 
GID. Meipsi & en este dum & a lam na cestin urn. 

Hear me, and judge, and do not too hastily ques- 
tion me (about this surprize.) 

* The Aphrodisia were celebrated in honour of Venus at 
Cyprus and other places. Here, they who would be initiated, 
gave a piece of money to Venus, as to a prostitute, and re- 
ceived presents from her. Abbe Banier. 

f Bene, Celtic, from whence Venus. 

J This is a compound ofmuis and tine ; muis a frowning, 
contracted, menacing brow, tine a link of a chain. 

<xldJm alam, out of hand, off-hand, indiscriminately. 

|| <xtn no an). I. oJc. 

to question, to doubt, to be afraid. 

13 i THE GAEL. 

Free Translation of the foregoing Second 
Scene of the Fifth Act of the Posnulus. 


Milphio. I will go and address them in Punic ; 
if they will reply I will continue to speak in Pu- 
nic : if not I will change my manner to their lan- 
guage. What sayest thou ? Have you any re- 
collection still of Punic. 

Ag. None at all. For, tell me, how should he 
be able to know it, who at six years of age was 
stolen from Carthage. 

Han. Immortal gods ! How many noble youths 
have been stolen from Carthage in this manner ? 

Mil. What sayest thou ? 

Ag. What is your desire ? 

Mil. Do you wish I should address him in 
Punic ? 

Ag. Do you understand it ? 

Mil. There is no Carthaginian speaks purer 
Punic at this day, well ! 

Ag. Ask what he wills, and for what he has 
come who he is, and whence he is. Do not 
be reserved with him. 

Mil. Hoy, Sir Who are you and from what 
city ? 

Han. Hanno Muthumballe hi Chaedreanach. 
lamHanno Muthumballe, dwelling at Carthage. 


Ag. What does he say ? 

Mil. He says that he is Hanno, son of Mu- 
thumballe, a Carthaginian from Carthage. 

Han. Avo. Alas! 

Mil. He salutes. 

Han. Donni ! How unfortunate. 

Mil. He wishes you to give him something 
which I know not. Shall I promise him ? 

Ag. Salute him again in Punic, using my 

Mil. Avo Donni ! He speaks to me, for you, 
in his own language. 

Han. A ma babacht ! O ! my dear child. 

Mil. That is for you rather than me, 

Ag. What says he ? 

Mil. He says he is a miserable wretch, and 
possibly mistakes us for physicians. 

Ag. If so deny it, for I am unwilling to lead 
your guest astray. 

Mil. Hear, &c. &c. 

Ag. So I wish ; I will doubtless, have re- 
course to every method. Ask him now what he 
is in need of? 

Mil. You who have no money why have you 
come to this city, and what do you seek ? 
Han. Muphursa ! ! my grief. 
Ag. What does he say ? 
Han. Mi vule chianna ! My sorrow lasts long ! 

136 THE GAEL. 

Ag. For what came he ? 

Mil. You do not hear ? He says he wishes to 
have the Edile plays in pomp at Carthage. 

Han. Laech la chanaim liminichot. At any 
price would I purchase my children. 

Mil. He says that a narrow vessel and nuts 
brought him now he prays that you may give 
him assistance, in order that he may dispose of 
the same. 

Ag. I believe he is a trader. 

Han. Is am ar uineam. 

Ag. What is it ? 

Han. Palum erga dechta ! 1 will submit to 
my fate ! 

Ag. Milphio, what does he now say ? 

Mil. He says that he sells spades and pitchforks, 
that he will dig the garden and cut corn. I think 
that he might be sent to your harvest. 

Ag. What is that to me ? 

Mil. I wished that you should be correctly in- 
formed, and that you may not fancy he has re- 
ceived any thing privately. 

Han. Maphanniumsucorahim. I hope to finish 
my labour and be at rest. 

Mil. Hem ! Be cautious how you grant what 
he asks. 

Ag. What does he say ? What does he ask for, 
tell me at once. 

Mil. You may order him to be put under tor- 


ture, and have many stones to be laid over him, 
that you may kill him. 

Han. Gan ebel Balsameni ar a san. That the 

good Baalsamin (Apollo) may favour thee. 

Ag. What does he say ? 

Mil. By Hercules now, indeed I know it. 

Han. That you may know henceforward, I 
will address myself to you in Latin, &c. 



Gid. Who knocks? 

Mil. Who is next to you ? 

Gid. What would you ? 

Mil. Ha, do you know who this man with the 
tunic may be ? 

Gid. Who is this I behold ! By the great Jove, 
he is indeed my master, and the father of my 
foster children Hanno, the Carthaginian ! 

Mil. Behold what evils this supposed cun- 
ning fellow turns out an honest Carthaginian, and 
inclines all to his interest. 

Gid. Hail, O my dear master Hanno, most 
unexpected to me and your children hail, do not 
be surprized, nor slight me. Do you not recog- 
nize your servant Giddeneme. 


Hanno. I know you, but where are my chil- 
dren, that above all things I desire to know. 

Ag. At the temple of Venus. 

Han. What are they doing there, tell me ? 

Ag. This is the Aphrodisia a festival day of 
Venus, and they are gone to supplicate the god- 
dess that she may be propitious. 

Gid. I think they have done enough, since 
their father is come. 

Ag. Are they his daughters ! 

Gid. It is even as you say your goodness has 
evidently been of advantage to us. You came 
here in good time this day, for to-day they will 
change their name, and make unworthy gain by 
their noble bodies. 

Han. Handone silli hanun bene silli in mus- 
tine. Whenever Venus grants a favour, it is 
linked with misfortune. 

Gid. Meipsi et en este dum et a lam na cestin 
um. Hear me, and judge, and do not hastily 
question me, fyc. 



Celtic Gaul included central France and Switzerland Hel- 
vetii, Tigurini, Sfc. tribes of the same people Erroneous no- 
tion of the Welsh being Celts, or the descendants of the Ro- 
man Britons No affinity between the Welsh and Gaelic 
Vergobretus EdwardLhuyd's ArchceologiaHis notion of 
the Gwydhelians or Gael they possessed Wales before the 
Welsh Rowland Ccesar^s account of the Gauls their civi- 
lization DivitiacusLiscus used Greek characters Vene- 
ti their ships had 200 large vessels The Britons British 
money gold, brass, and iron rings Unclean beasts Jewish 
custom of marriage among the Britons mistaken by Ccesar 
Factions Druids originated in Britain used Greek let- 
ters Gauls boasted of their pedigrees Clans Germans 
have no Druids Avaricum Critognatus his speech 
Cippos, what f 

I have endeavoured, I trust successfully, to 
establish the fact of the identity of the Gaelic and 
Phenician language, and that the Gael, or Celtse, 
were a Phenician colony. I shall now attempt 
to prove that the antient Britons and Gauls, of 


Caesar's day, spoke the Gaelic language, and were 
the same people as the Irish, by proceeding to in- 
vestigate, in the first instance, the language, re- 
ligion, institutions, manners, and customs of the 
Celtee of South Britain and Gaul in the time of 
the Romans. 

Csesar limits Celtic Gaul to the country in- 
cluded from north to south between the Seine and 
the Garonne, and from the ocean on the west to 
the Rhine in Helvetia, and the Rhone on the 
east. Confining the Celtee within those limits we 
should recollect that the Acquitani and Belgae 
were often called Gauls by the Romans, and that 
Ceesar styled all modern France Gaul, but em- 
phatically designates the Celtse as the Galli, " ter- 
tiam qui ipsorum lingua Celtte, nostri, Galli ap- 
pellantur ;" and in speaking of the three nations, 
Belgse, Acquitani, and Celtse, he says, " Hi omnes, 
lingua, institutis, legibus, inter se different." 

Although Csesar gives different names to the 
people occupying the large area inhabited by 
the Celtae, comprising two thirds of modern 
France, and nearly all Switzerland, they should 
be considered, perhaps without an exception, but 
as tribes or divisions of the same nation, who de- 
rived their denomination from some ancestor, 


place of residence, or other fortuitous circum- 

The chief divisions of these tribes were the 
Helvetii, and their subdivisions, the Tigurini, 
Tugeni, Seduni, Rauraci, Ambrones, the Sequani, 
Segusiani and the Urbigenes. To the west of the 
Rhone and Garonne, dwelt the ^Edui, Mandubii, 
Boli, Lingones, Meldi, Cubi, Bituriges, Lemo- 
vices, Ruteni, Sautones, Pictones, Namnetes, Ve- 
neti, Corispiti, Osismii, Curiosolites, Unelli, Rhe- 
dones, Aulerci, Carnutes, Euberovices, Aulerci, 
Lexovii, Viducasses, Bajocasses, and some other 
smaller tribes. 

These names are here recited because they 
are of considerable value and importance, for 
they, as well as the names of the deities, princes, 
eminent persons, rivers, towns, and prominent 
features, and every word handed down by Csesar, 
Tacitus, and other Roman writers, as Celtic, 
are either purely Gaelic or reducible to their 
elements and meaning in the Gaelic language. 

Tacitus says the language of the Gauls and 
Britons differed but little, " Sermo hand multum 
diver sus" and Caesar declares, " neque multum 

* Tacitus in Agricola, c. ii. 

142 THE GAEL. 

a Gallica differnnt consuetudine ;* in fact, it 
may be inferred from both that they were the 
same people ; and it is not a little extraordinary, 
that points so very important to the development 
of true history, should apparently have altogether 
escaped attention, or not to have led to more 
decisive conclusions. 

This may chiefly be attributed to two notions 
which have obtained and prevailed to an extraor- 
dinary extent, that the true origin of the Gauls 
and Britons have remained so long a mystery ; 
I say extraordinary extent, because had the ques- 
tion been examined by any competent person, he 
must, I conceive, soon have discovered the true 
state of the case. 

The first is that universally admitted axiom, 
that the Welsh are the genuine descendants of 
the Roman Britons who retired into Wales on 
the fall of the Roman empire, and there pre- 
served their language and independence. 

The second is, that there is little difference be- 
tween the Welsh and the Irish languages, both 
being considered branches of the Celtic. 

Cssar Comm. lib. v, 14. 


Neither of these propositions are true ; the 
Welsh are not the descendants of the antient Ro- 
man Britons, and there are not perhaps two lan- 
guages less similar in their construction than the 
Welsh and Gaelic. 

Having acquired a knowledge of the Irish 
and Welsh languages, I recollected what Cae- 
sar and Tacitus had said of the Gauls and 
Britons, and determined again to examine those 
authors with a view to ascertain if there .was 
evidence, in either, to prove that the language of 
Gaul was really the tongue now denominated 
Irish, or Gaelic, or the Welsh. I have been 
amply compensated ; for if I have not greatly de- 
ceived myself, it has led to results of the utmost 
importance to historic knowledge. The first point 
which struck me with no small surprize and satis- 
faction, was the following in Csesar.* 

" The ^Edui having promised Csesar a . supply 
of corn, which on various pretexts had been de- 
layed, he called before him their chiefs, who were 
in his camp, among them Divitiacus and Liscus, 
at that time their sovereign magistrates, and were 

* Caesar, ch. vi. 

144 THE GAEL. 

called by the JEdui Vergobret, " quern fergobre- 
tnm appellunt ^Edui, qui creatur annuum, et vitse 
necisque in suos habet protestatem." Here I 
found a pure Irish title ; and although the custom 
of annual election has not, as far as I have been 
able to collect, obtained in Ireland, yet the kings 
and chiefs have ever been elective. The word is 
a compound of j:ea/i, a man ; go, for ; fyeJte, 
judgment, or the chief judge, pronounced Per- 

The credit of having first made this discovery, 
I have since ascertained, is due to the learned 
Edward Lhuyd, who published it in the Welsh 
preface to the Archeologia, (afterward published 
in English by Bishop Nicholson in the Irish His- 
torical Library.) It is very singular, however, 
that this learned person should have locked up the 
discovery in the Welsh language, it did not 
make its appearance in English until 1724. His 
words are : 

" Vergobretus, says Caesar, signified a chief ma- 
gistrate in the language of the ^Edui." " Liscus 
qui summo magistratui prseerat, quern Vergobre- 
tum, vocant ^Edui, qui creatur annuus, et vita 
necisque in suos habet potestatem." Now, Fear 
go breath, signifies a judge verbatim, the man 


that judges. And it was by taking notice of this 
word that I first suspected the Gwydhelians* to 
be antient Gauls, a thing I see at present no 
reason to doubt about. Seeing then, we find by 
the antient language of the Celtee, and by a great > 
number of the old Gwydhelian words, that are 
still extant in the present French, that the Gwyd- 
helians came originally out of France.t Some will 
winder how it comes to pass, that we find so 
many Teutonick, or German words in the Irish. 
But the reason for that was, that those people, of 
the old Gaul, called Belgse, spoke the Teutonick 
as they do yet : and besides the Celtse that came 

J 7 

hither, and passed some ages afterwards into Ire- 
land, some of the Belgas came also, and those +> ct^\ 
were the very men they called Firbolg, who came, 
according to their tradition, into Ireland long 

before the Scots." 

**4 -&c* f "?*** c*. ^ &< 

In considering the origin of the Welsh or 
Cymbri, it will be necessary to advert again to 
Mr. Lhuyd and other Welsh authors, their argu- 
ments and opinions belong more particularly to 
that branch of the subject. 

* The Welsh name for the Irish or Gael. 
f This by no means follows. 



As Caesar's account of the Helvetii, who were a 
colony of the ^Edui, exhibit no inconsiderable ad- 
vancement in civilization, we may justly suppose 
that the mother country and the previous co- 
lonies were not less civilized. What, therefore, 
we read of the Helvetii, we are justified in apply- 
ing to the Britons, as Csesar says the learning of 
the Druids had its origin in the British isles, 
and that the chief seat of the Druids, was in 
an island, west of Britain. The Helvetii having 
been induced, by the authority of Orgetorix, to 
attempt the subjugation of their neighbours, " they 
resolved to make provision of such things as 
was required for their purposed expedition, and 
bought great numbers of cars, and horses for 
carriages, and for two years sowed much corn 
that they might have plenty in store, and in the 
third year enacted a solemn law that Orgeto- 
rlx should be a kind of dictator" Here are 
the unequivocal marks and indications of civili- 
zation and obedience to law. Afterwards he states 
they had great store of boats, with which they 
made a bridge over the river Arar. 

The speech of Divico, the Helvetian, to Caesar, 
is also remarkable ; when required to give hostages 
for the fidelity of his people, he replied, that 
" their ancestors taught them by their example 

CJESAR. 147 

to demand and not to give hostages" Thereby 
intimating their former martial glory and con- 

The speech of Liscus also shows that, among 
some of the Celtse, the people had no small in- 
fluence in the state : " There were some indivi- 
duals of so great authority that they could do 
more by private influence with the people, than 
they could being magistrates"* 

The cities of the Celtse of Gaul, were great 
and rich. " Bibracte oppido ^Eduornm longe 
maxima et copiosissimo" Caesar's general re- 
marks on the Gauls, prove them to have been 
an intelligent and by no means an uncivilized 

The Helvetians were armed with shields and a 
sword. " The Gauls were very much annoyed 
by the Roman piles having pierced their shields, 
which they could not extract on account of the 

* " Turn demum Liscus oratione Caesaris adduetus, quod 
autea tacuerat proponit. Esse nonnullos quorum auctoritas 
apud plebem plurimum valeat, qui privatim plus possint, 
quam ipsi magistrate." 

L J2 

14<8 THE GAEL. 

iron having- bent ; nor could they afterwards use 
their left hands for their defence, and many of 
them threw away their shields, arid fought, dis- 
armed, as it were, without them."* 

There is a strong resemblance in this mode of 
fighting with that of the Highlanders of Scotland ; 
even so late as the last century, they used the 
little buckler and the broad sword. 

The Helvetii were armed with darts and jave- 
lins " et nonnulli inter carros rotasque mataras 
ac tragulas subjiciebant nostrosque vulnerabant." 

These were also the weapons of the Irish ; and 
spear heads of brass of all sizes are found in 
great abundance. 

" In the Helvetian camps were found written 
in Greek characters, lists of the number of 

* " Gallis magno ad pti'gnam erat impedimenta, quod pluri- 
bus eorum scutis uno icfcu pilorum transfixis et colligatis, 
cum ferrum se inflexissit, neque evellere, neque sinistra im- 
pedita, satis commode pugnare poterat ; multi ut diu jac- 
tate bracchio, praeoptarent scutum manu emittere et nudo. 
corpora pugnare." 


those who left their country, which were brought 
to Caesar, distinguishing those who were able to 
Lear arms, the boys, old men, and the women, 
making a total of 368,000, of which 192,000 
were able to bear arms.* Here it appears the 
Celtse used a character similar to the Greek, and 
were a literate people, although they were the 
most warlike and fierce of all the Celtic Gauls, 
and less addicted to learning than the other tribes, 
having so much employment in defending them- 
selves from their fierce neighbours on the north 
bank of the Rhine. If these were literate, how 
much more so were those to whom they sent their 
children for instruction ? 

It appears from another passage of Caesar, that 
although they used Greek characters, yet they 
were not acquainted with the Greek language, for 
he wrote his letter, or dispatch, to Cicero in Greek, 
lest it should be intercepted and his designs thus 
frustrated. Is not this a strong fact in support of 

*"In castris Helvetiorum tabulae repertaa sunt, litter is 
Greeds confecta, et ad Caesarem perlatse : quibus in tabulis 
nominatim ratio confecta erat, qui numerus domo exisset eo- 
rum, qui arma ferre possunt, et item separatim pueri, series, 

150 THE GAEL. 

the Phenician origin of the Celtse ? The Greeks 
had their original alphabet, of eighteen letters, 
from the Phenicians, so had the Celtse, as will ap- 
pear when we enter more fully into their origin. 

M. Valerius Procillus was sent to Ariovistus, 
because he was well acquainted with the Celtic 
language, which Ariovistus had learned from his 
long residence among the Gauls."* It is waste of 
time and argument to attempt to prove that Ario- 
vistus was not of Celtic extraction, even if the 
German language did not prove it. 

The Veneti, the most powerful of the states 
of Gaul, inhabited the country to the north of 
the mouth of the Loire, and their name is to be 
found in the town of Vannes, or Vennes. - 
" Quod et naves habent Veneti plurimas quibus 
in Britanniam navigare consueverunt." 

The following is Caesar's description of the 
shipping of these Veneti : 

" The ships of the Gauls were thus built and 
equipped. Their keels were flatter than those of 

* " Et propter linguae Gatlicae scientiam, qua multu jam 
Ariovistus longinqua consuetudine utebatur." 

CAESAR. 151 

the Romans, and therefore better calculated for 
a shallow and flat coast ; the fore-castle was erect 
and perpendicular, and the poop was so contrived 
as to bear the force of the large tempestuous waves. 
They were altogether built for strength. The ribs 
and beams were made of timber a foot square 
and fastened with iron bolts an inch thick. In- 
stead of cables, their anchors were made fast with 
iron chains ;* they also made their sails of hides, 
either for want, or ignorance of the use of linen for 
that purpose, or because sails made of linen would 
scarcely be strong enough to serve ships of so 
great a burthen, or be able to sustain the force 
and violence of the tempestuous winds of those 
seas. The Roman vessels exceeded those ships in 
the celerity of their motions, by means of their 
oars, but, in navigating those coasts, and encoun- 
tering foul weather, they were altogether inferior. 
They were built so strong that the Romans could 
not injure them by running their prows, or beak- 
heads, against them, nor could they throw their 
weapons with any effect into them, they were of 
such great altitude ; besides which, in case of foul 
weather, these ships could with safety put to sea, 
or more safely lie on a flat shore, without fear of 

* Chain cables ! nothing new under the sun. 


the damages to which the sharp built Roman 
vessels were always exposed." 

" The Veneti mustered two hundred large skips 
to oppose Csesar's fleet. They trusted entirely to 
sails, and the Romans having- cut the ropes by 
which they hoisted them up, by means of a kind 
of crooked knife, or reaping hook, fastened to a 
pole, rendered those heavy vessels unmanagable r 
and thus conquered them." 

" While the Gauls take much pleasure in their 
oxen, and purchase them at a great price, the 
Germans never think of importing a better de- 
scription than their own ugly and ill-formed cattle, 
which, by daily and constant use, they inure to 
perform the required service."* 

*' The Gauls are too ready to commence hos- 
tilities, yet are they impatient in suffering the ca- 
lamities and consequences thereof. f 

* " Quin etiam jumentrs, quibus maxime Gallia delectatur, 
quajque impenso parant pretio. German! importalis non 
utuntur, sed quae sunt apud eos nata prava atque deform a, 
Lsec quotidiana exercitatione summi ut sint laboris, efficiunt." 

f " Nam ut ad bella suscipienda, Gallorum alacer ac pronip- 
tus est animus, sic mollis minime resistens ad calamitate* 
perf'ereiidas mcns eoruni est." 

C^SAR. 153 

" Caesar being aware of these circumstances, and 
being- apprehensive of the fickleness of the Gauls, 
who are sudden in their resolutions, and fond of no- 
velty, he dare not trust them ; for they are accus- 
tomed to inquire of travellers and passengers for 
news of what had happened j and even the com- 
mon people would flock about traders in the 
towns, asking whence they came, and what news 
they had brought, and by these rumours they 
were generally influenced in their actions, of 
which they had generally to repent, trusting in 
such uncertain intelligence, coined to please the 

" Although the summer was nearly past, and 
winter in those northern parts of Gaul comes on 
very suddenly, still Caesar determined to go over 
to Britain, having ascertained that in all the for- 
mer wars the Gauls had received their chief sup- 
ply of provisions from thence, and if the ad- 
vanced period of the year should prevent his put- 
ting an end to the war there, yet, it would be im- 
portant if he went to examine the island, to as- 
certain the quality of the inhabitants, their ports, 
and landing places, of which most of the Gauls 
were (or pretended to be) ignorant, for seldom 
did any but merchants go to that country. Nor 
had even they any knowledge of more than the 

154> THE GAEL. 

sea coast opposite to Gaul. For having called 
together the merchants from all quarters, he could 
not ascertain from them either the size of the 
island, or by what nations it was inhabited, what 
was their mode of warfare, their laws, customs, 
institutions, or even what ports they had capa- 
ble of receiving or sheltering a large fleet." 

The merchants could not have been ignorant 
of Britain as they pretended ; indeed, the first part 
of the paragraph contradicts the last. For, if the 
Gauls received their chief supplies from Britain, 
the best intercourse and understanding must have 
existed between the two nations, and it will appear 
hereafter that the Gauls sent their youth for in- 
struction to Britain, which implies a constant well 
understood intercourse. But the natural conclu- 
sion is that the British merchants, who supplied 
their friends and allies, the Gauls, wished to deceive 
the common enemy ; and that their ignorance was 
feigned, is clear, for the news of his intentions and 
preparations went with great celerity across the 
channel, and many of the petty states on the coast 
sent their ambassadors to him with offers of sub- 
mission. He first sent over C. Volusenus to in- 
spect the coast, who after five days returned 
with the information he had collected. After 
a short time he embarked two legions in eighty 


ships of burthen, and set sail from the neighbour- 
hood of the Morini, about Bolougne, with a fair 
wind ; on his arrival he found the high cliffs 
lined and occupied by the Britons ; not think- 
ing it safe to land there, he sailed eight miles 
from that place to an open and flat shore. The 
Britons, perceiving Caesar's intentions, sent for- 
ward the horses and chariots, which they 
were accustomed to use in war, and afterwards 
brought up the rest of their forces to the place 
where the Romans intended to land very 
much annoying them, who were heavily laden, by 
their missile weapons ; but, when the Romans 
removed from the large ships into the gallies, with 
which the Britons were unacquainted, they as- 
sailed them with slings, arrows, and engines ; after 
some time the Romans made good their landing, 
and dispersed the enemy. Afterwards, from 
the ignorance of the Romans of the tides, their 
shipping and gallies getting on shore at high water 
and a spring tide, were much injured, which in- 
duced the Britons to make further efforts. 

" The manner of fighting of the Britons with 
chariots, was to drive up and down, and to throw 
their javelins, when they saw they could do it with 
advantage, and by the terror of their vehicles to 
their enemy ; when they had entangled 


the cavalry of their enemy, they dismounted 
and fought on foot, while their charioteers would 
retire behind them to wait their master's commands, 
ever ready to attend them, thus uniting to the 
celerity of cavalry the firm stability of infantry; 
and so expert were they in their motions, that they 
could halt on the declivity of a hill, turn short, 
or moderate their rate of going, at their pleasure, 
run along the pole of their chariots, and remain 
on the yoke or harness of their horses, and in an 
instant regain their former position." 

Caesar had eight hundred ships at his second 

" The interior of Britain is inhabited by those 
who may be considered natives, whose ancestors 
were born in the island, but the coasts were peo- 
pled by Belgic tribes, who settled in possessions 
they had gained by the sword, or otherwise,, and 
were called by the name of the cities from whence 
they came in Belgium. The country is very popu- 
lous and they possess as good houses as in Gaul. 
They have great store of cattle, and use for 
money, gold, brass, and iron rings, by certain 
w r eight. la the interior they have much tin, and 
on the coasts they have some iron ; they import 
brass. Thev have all kinds of trees which are 

CAESAR. 157 

found in Gaul, but the % and the beech. Their 
religion forbids their eating 1 either the hare, the hen, 
or the goose, notwithstanding they have great vari- 
eties.* The climate is more temperate than that 
of Gaul . The island is of triangular shape, whereof 
one side lays on the east towards Gaul, on which is 
Kent ; this angle is five hundred miles long. 
The other side lies towards Spain, to the west, on 
which side Hibernia is placed, an island about half 
the size of Britain, and about as far from it as it is 
from Gaul. In the mid-way between Britain and 
Ireland lies an island called Mona, and several 
smaller islands, of which some write, that in win- 
ter they have darkness for thirty days, of which 
we could learn little from our inquiries ; we found, 
however, by certain measures of water, that the 
nights in Britain were shorter than on the con- 
tinent. The third side of the angle lies to the 
north and the open sea, pointing towards Ger- 

* The hare was an unclean animal among the Jews, and 
probably among the Phenicians also. Caesar may have been 
deceived in this as well as other facts related by him of the 
opinions of the Britons. We have no corroboration of their 
not eating these animals from other authorities ; it appears, 
by what is before stated, that the Britons purposely misre- 
presented facts to him. For instance, the statement about 
the Isle of Man, and the custom of promiscuous intercourse 
with women, as hereafter remarked. 

158 THE GAEL. 

many this is said to be eight hundred miles long 1 . 
The whole island is estimated at two thousand 
miles in circumference. Of all the inhabitants, 
those of Kent are the most civilized, they dif- 
fer little from the Gauls. Some of the people of 
the interior sow no corn, but'live upon milk and 
flesh, are clothed with skins, having their faces 
painted blue, that they may appear more terrible 
in fight ; they wear their hair long, not allowing 
any to grow on" their bodies, except their upper 
lip. Their wives are common to ten or twelve, 
especially of brethren with brethren, and parents 
with children, but the children are accounted his 
to whom the mother was first given in marriage." 

This custom of the Britons, it is presumed, has 
been mistaken ; the wives were not in common, 
during the lives of the husbands, but a woman 
was given, on the death of her husband, to 
his brother, " that he might raise up seed to 
his deceased brother," for " the children were" 
says Csesar, " counted his to whom the mother 
was first given in marriage' 9 It is unnecessary 
to point out the Phenician origin of this custom, 
Holy Writ supplies it. What has generally been 
considered as a proof of the profligate manners 
of the antient Britons, is nothing more than an 
adherence to the antient customs of their ances- 


tors, before they left the east, and has nothing in 
it to shock the most moral mind. Caesar knew 
the fact imperfectly, and gave it, as he understood 
it, erroneously. 

There is much contradiction and inconsistency 
in some accounts of Caesar's with other parts of 
his writings, and even with the succeeding para- 
graph in which he gives an account of their dis- 
cipline and manner of fighting, of their horses 
and chariots, which evinces he was deceived, 
and that the Britons were not the uncivilized bar- 
barians he elsewhere represents them. In fact it ap- 
pears that he knew little or nothing of the inha- 
bitants of the interior, of his own knowledge ; he 
was told that they painted themselves blue, and 
were represented as low in the scale of civilization, 
although the evidence he supplies would lead us to 
draw a contrary conclusion. He evidently al- 
luded to the Caledonians, when he speaks of the 
painted people of the interior. In his account 
of the Druids, he tells us the most learned of the 
Celtae were those of Britain ; and yet afterwards, 
in describing its inhabitants, he makes them much 
lower in the scale of humanity than those who 
sent their sons to be educated by them. If he be 
right in one place he must be wrong in the other, 
or at least we cannot have rightly understood 

160 THE GAEL. 

him. It is said by others that the chief seat of. 
Druidic learning, was in an island west of Bri- 
tain, not in Britain itself; if this be true, Caesar 
may yet have spoken correctly when he said 
the Gauls sent their youth for education to Bri- 
tain, i. e. to one of the British isla?ids. 

" In Gaul, not only in every city, town, vil- 
lage, and precinct, but almost in every tribe, and fa- 
mily, there are factions, whose chiefs possess such 
authority, that all their actions are guided by 
their direction. This appears a very antient 
custom, instituted to enable the poorest, and most 
inconsiderable, to demand justice and protection 
at the hand of the great, who, if they ever suf- 
fered their followers to be oppressed or defrauded, 
would lose all authority amongst them." 

This remarkable passage is equally applicable 
to the Irish as to the Gauls, the power of the 
chief depended entirely on his power to protect 
his clansmen. It is also an instance of the incon- 
sistency of Caesar's remarks, who in the very next 
chapter, in his description of the Druids, says 
that the common people, among the Gauls, were 
mere slaves and bondmen, and had no influence 
whatever in the state. Such are the inconsistencies 
of this admirable author. 

C/ESAR. 161 

" Throughout all Gaul there are but two de- 
scriptions, or ranks of men, who are of any ac- 
count, for the common people are but servants, 
and are never admitted to a voice in any public 
assembly, but, being kept under by poverty, extor- 
tion, or the oppression of the great, become as 
it were bond slaves. 

" Of these two classes the one are the Druids, 
the other the knights," or gentry, or nobles, to 
use the language of the continent. 

" The Druids are occupied with the sacred du- 
ties of expounding their religion and ordering 
the ceremonies of their public and private sa- 
crifices. To them also the youth are committed 
for education, and they are held in such honour 
and reputation, that all controversies or disputes, 
both public and private, are referred to their de- 
cision. If any offence be committed, as murder, 
or manslaughter, or any dispute respecting their 
estates of lands or inheritance, it is the Druids 
who decide, punishing the guilty and rewarding 
the virtuous. If any one, even a prince or no- 
ble, dispute or disobey their mandate, they ex- 
communicate him from the rites of religion, which 
is the severest punishment among them. When 
this sentence is passed on any, they are reputed 



of the number of impious and wicked, they are 
shunned and avoided by all, and their society re- 
jected lest they should contaminate by their com- 
munion. They are likewise put out of the pro- 
tection of the law, nor can they demand justice 
if they require it, nor claim any honour due to 
their rank or station. The Druids have over 
them a chief, high priest, or primate, who 
possesses supreme authority, on whose death, if 
any one is super-eminent in power and dignity, 
he succeeds, but if there are many of equal rank, 
they proceed to election, and even on some oc- 
casions, decide the contest by the sword. They 
meet at a certain period of the year near Chartres 
(in the confines of the Carnutes,) which is in the 
centre of Gaul, and sit there in a sacred place, 
and then all people who have suits or controver- 
sies resort to have them decided, and implicitly 
obey their orders and decrees. 

" The art and learning of the Druids, had its 
origin in Britain, and was brought thence into 
Gaul, and even at this time (Caesar's) such as 
would attain perfect knowledge of their discipline 
and learning in general, travel thither to learn 
it. The Druids are exempt from military service, 
from the payment of taxes, and all other civil 
duties. Many adopt the profession of their own 

CAESAR. 103 

will, and others are sent to the school by their 
friends. They are said to learn many verses, 
and even continue their studies for twenty years. 
It is not lawful for them to commit their learning* 


to writing, and for that I consider they have two 
reasons first, that their learning 1 should not be- 
come common or vulgar and secondly, that their 
scholars should not trust so much to their writings 
as their memory, as it generally happens when 
men trust to their books and writings they ne- 
glect the advantage of a good memory. In their 
common concerns of life, however, both private 
and public, they use, in their writings, the 
Greek letters. 

" They teach, as their chief doctrine, that men's 
souls are immortal, and move from one body 
to another after death, which they consider 
important to stir men up to the practice of virtue 
and contempt of death. They also teach the 
youth many points touching the motions of the 
stars and heavenly bodies, the magnitude of the 
earth, the nature of this world and of all things, 
and the dignity and power of the gods. 

" The second class of men are the knights, or 
nobles, who, whenever an occasion arises, as wars, 
or commotions, which before Caesar's coming, 

164 THE GAEL. 

occurred every year, to offer or resist injuries, 
are always parties ; and as one man exceeds 
another in birth, wealth, or power, so he is 
attended by his clansmen or followers, which 
they consider the chief mark of nobility. 

" The whole nation of the Gauls are much 
addicted to religion ; and, when any one is griev- 
ously diseased, or embarrassed in their warlike en- 
terprises, they either sacrifice men as an oblation, 
or vow to sacrifice themselves, by the ministry of 
the Druids, being persuaded that the deity cannot 
be propitiated but by giving the life of one man 
for that of another, and for this end they have 
public sacrifices appointed ; others have mon- 
strous large images made of osiers, or wicker work, 
in whose bodies and limbs are put human vic- 
tims, which being set on fire are burned to 
death. The execution of those convicted of 
robbery, theft, or other crime, they consider most 
pleasing to the gods, but, if such are not to be 
had, they spare not the innocent. Their chief deity 
is Mercury i whose image is numerous among 
them, they adore him as the inventor of all arts, 
the conductor and guide in travelling, and they 
consider him as possessing great power and 
influence in merchandize and money transactions. 
Next to him they prefer Apollo, Mars, Jupiter, 

CAESAR. 165 

and Minerva, of whom they hold the same opi- 
nions as other nations. Apollo in healing 1 diseases, 
Minerva in finding out artificial works, Jove in 
ruling the heavens, and Mars for war. When 
they are about to encounter an enemy, they pro- 
mise to devote the spoil to him, and such beasts as 
they capture they sacrifice ; other things they lay 
up in some place, and many such heaps of things, 
thus taken, are to be seen in the holy places of 
their cities. Nor does it often occur that any 
one neglects or violates his vow, by keeping 
back any part, or ever take away spoils thus de- 
voted, for they would incur a heavy penalty and 
torture for that offence. 

" The Gauls boast themselves much on their 
pedigrees and ancestry, being taught by the Druids 
that they descended from the god Dis. And they 
number their times by nights rather than by days, 
observing their days, years, and nativities, in such 
a way as to make the days follow the nights." 
Here is a strong indication of Phenician origin, 
a custom in exact accordance with that of the Jews. 
'The evening and the morning were the first 
day. 9 

" They differ also from all nations in that they 
never suffer their sons to approach their assembly 


until they are grown fit for war, thinking it scan- 
dalous for a son to stand in public in his fa- 
ther's presence. 

" To the portions which they receive with their 
wives, they add as much of their own goods, and 
the use of this money, added together, is kept 
apart, and the longest liver hath both the principal 
and interest. The men have power of life and death 
over their wives and children. And when a man, 
of high birth and great rank, dies, his relations 
assemble to inquire as to the cause of his decease ; 
if there be any cause of suspicion against his 
wife, she is put to the torture, after the manner of 
a slave, and if guilty, she dies tormented with fire 
and every species of torture. Their funerals, ac- 
cording with their rank of life, are very sumptu- 
ous, burying with the body all he took delight in 
while living, not sparing even living creatures. 
The custom was not, long since, even to bury with 
their bodies such of his followers and slaves as 
w ? ere most favoured by the deceased. 

" In some of the states it is prohibited, by a 
special law, to speak or give out a rumour or re- 
port, touching the state, to any one but a magis- 
trate, as it has been found that ignorant men have 
been terrified by false reports, and thus moved 

C^SAR. 167 

to desperate acts against the public peace. The 
magistrates publish such things as they think fit, 
but it is not lawful to speak publicly on matters 
of state but in the assemblies of the state." 

No one can read this without being struck 
with the remarkable coincidence of character ex- 
hibited here with that of the Irish nation, as far 
as their customs, predilections, and manners, 
have come down to us. Caesar says : 

" The art and learning of the Druids had its 
origin in Britain (the British isles), and was 
brought thence into Gaul." And their customs, 
and learning, of course travelled together. The 
source of learning and the institutions of a people 
are ever held in the greatest veneration and re- 
spect ; and we may fairly attribute to the people 
from whom the learning originated, and proceeded, 
greater and more refined acquirements and cul- 
tivation in that learning, than would be found in 
the people who sent their youth to them to be 

" As one man exceeds another in birth, power, 
or wealth, so is he attended by his clansmen, or 
followers, which they consider the chief mark of 

168 THE GAEL. 

This passage shows in a remarkable manner, 
the identity of customs between the antient Gauls 
and the Gael of Ireland. Their chief must pos- 
sess first the qualification of being of the blood of 
the clan ; if he has this, then his power and wealth 
gave him the pre-eminence ; so it was with the 
Irish, while the law of tanistry existed. The most 
warlike and valiant of the tribe was ever chosen 
tanist, or heir presumptive to the reigning chief. 
The dignity must descend in the royal tribe, but 
it mattered not how distant he stood in his rela- 
tion to the chief in possession. " The whole na- 
tion of the Gauls are much addicted to religion." 
In this respect they also resemble the Irish, the 
inhabitants of the island of saints. 

" The Gauls boast themselves much on their 
pedigrees and ancestry." 

No nation, the Jews, perhaps, excepted, has 
been so attached to their genealogies, and keep- 
ing up the knowledge of their descent, as the 
Irish. Their most antient MSS. are replete 
with genealogies, and the numerous affiliations 
of their descents, although, generally speaking, 
they consist of mere names, without dates or his- 
torical notices. Some, indeed, of their most 
antient pedigrees are metrical, and contain a 

CAESAR. 169 

few notices of the acts of the individuals men- 
tioned, but they are meagre and scanty. At this 
day you will scarcely find a peasant in any of the 
provinces of Ireland, who is not able to recite his 
ancestors by name for ten generations. 

In their mode of burial they were also si- 
milar to the customs of the Gauls, for in the tu- 
muli are found fibulae, weapons, and utensils 
buried with the body. The Irish to this day are 
addicted to extravagance, far above their means, 
in their sumptuous funerals. 

" The Germans differ much in their manners, 
for they have neither Druids to perform divine 
service, nor sacrifices. They worship no gods 
but such as are obvious to their senses, and such 
as they fancy they receive daily benefits from, 
as the Sun, Moon, Vulcan, &c. other gods they 
have not so much as heard of, &c." 

" The Gauls, formerly, exceeded the Germans in 
military prowess, and often made war upon them, 
and, on account of the superabundant population 
and want of room to dwell in, they sent many colo- 
nies into Germany ; and thus those fertile por- 
tions of Germany, near the Hercynian forest 
(which Eratosthenes and other Greek writers men- 
tion under the name of Orcinia) were possessed 

170 THE GAEL. 

by the Volscse Teetosages who still dwelt there, 
and preserve their antient civility and ideas of 

In the account of the seige of Avaricum, the 
Gauls are thus described : 

" They (the Gauls) are a very intelligent and 
clever people, ever ready to imitate what they see 
others do, for they avoided our hooks with ropes, 
and drew them into the town with engines, and 
drew the earth from the mounts thrown up against 
the walls ; by their skill and dexterity in mining, 
which they acquired by their great iron mines, they 
set up towers on the walls, and covered them with 
raw hides ; and often made sallies by night and 
day, set fire to the mount, and assaulted the be- 
siegers in their works, and daily raised their tow- 
ers of equal height, which the daily increase of 
the mount had added to the Roman works 5 they 
also annoyed the open trenches, and hindered their 
approach to the wall, with casting into them hot 
boiling pitch, and large stones, and sharp stakes 
of wood burned at the ends. They built their 
walls in the following manner : long strait beams 
are placed in the ground tw 7 o feet from each other, 
bound together on the inside of the wall, and fast- 
ened with much earth, with the vacancies between 

CAESAR. 171 

the beams, fitted well with large stonesin the 
front of the wall, which being" thus placed, are 
cemented with mortar ; another course is then laid, 
laying the beams on the stones alternately, and 
thus until the wall is raised to its due height. 
This is a very strong way of building, and looks 
very well, keeping alternate courses of beams and 
stones in even lines ; thus, in defence, the stones 
keep it from burning, and the wood from the ef- 
fect of the battering ram. The beams are gene- 
rally about forty feet long, and can neither be 
broken nor pulled out." 

" Vercingetorix commanded all the archers, of 
which there are great numbers in Gaul, to attend 
him. Among the ^Edui the chief magistrate was 
prohibited from leaving the country." 

"The town of Alesia %lea^, a pleasant 
place, or country, which was besieged by Csesar, 
and reduced to great straits for provisions ; he 
caused additional works to be raised round about 
it, and among other things he planted stakes with 
pointed ends, so that if any of the besieged rush- 
ed out, to attack the besiegers, or destroy the 
works, they would rush upon and be pierced by 
these stakes, like a modern cheveux de frige. 
These stakes, says Caesar hos Cippos appellabant 


in Irish, is a sharpened stake, used for 

" A speech made on occasion of this siege, by 
Critognatus, a chief man of the Arverni, whose 
name was, as usual, very descriptive of his cha- 
racter in the Gaelic, the creator, or causer, of 
trembling or terror c/^teac, terror or tremb- 
ling fleactci/i, without, outwardly, or from any 
one ne<xc, any one t<x/i, out of. Caesar says, 
" Non prsetereunda videtur oratio Critognati 
propter ejus singularem ac nefariam crudelitatem." 

" Nothing," says he, " will I say of the opi- 
nion of those who call base servitude by the 
name of surrender, for I do not consider them 
worthy of being considered citizens, or admitted 
to the counsel. My intercourse must be with 
those who approve of sallies and resistance, in 
whose counsel appears, by unanimous opinion, 
to remain the recollection of antient virtue. 
It is not virtue, but debility of mind, that is 
not able to suffer privations for a time. Some 
men will more readily offer themselves to suffer 
death, than others endure hardship with patience. 
For my part, honour is paramount with me, I 
should prefer the first, did I not see a farther sa- 
crifice than our lives. In these, our consultations, 

CvESAR. 173 

we must consider the interest of all Gaul whom 
we have called around us for succour. What 
courage, do you imagine, would possess our friends 
and kinsmen, of whom 80,000 were slain in one 
place, if they were to fight upon their dead bo- 
dies. Do not defraud those of your help who 
have despised danger for your sakes, or by your 
weakness, rashness, or debility of mind, plunge 
all Gaul into slavery. Do you question their 
fidelity and constancy, because they appear not 
at a given day ? What do the Romans mean 
then by the works they have thrown up ? Do you 
think it is for exercise, or amusement ? If you 
receive no messengers, because communication 
is cut off, let these works be your witnesses that 
your friends ai;e coming, for fear of whom the 
Romans labour both night and day. What then 
is my counsel ? wWlet us follow the glorious ex- 
ample of our foj*4fEhers, in the wars against the 
Cimbri andJfiiH Ipes, a war not to be compared 
to this, wheij/j jjjg inclosed in the walled towns, 
a like distress and want, they sa- 
te cravings of hunger on the bodies of 
lose who were unfit for war, and would not yield 
tiiselves to the enemy. If we had not an ex- 
ample, it would be now an excellent one to es- 
tablish, for the sake of our liberty, to be handed to 
posterity. What war was ever like this ? Gaul 

174 THE GAEL. 

being- wasted and depopulated and brought to 
great misery, the Cimbri at length left the coun- 
try and sought other territories, but left us our 
laws, customs, land, and liberty. But what would 
the Romans desire ? they never make war but to 
enslave eternally noble nations, and to deprive 
them of their country. If you be ignorant of 
what they do in distant countries, look at that 
part of Gaul they have reduced to a province, 
where all are reduced to labour with the axe in 
perpetual servitude." 

This is not the speech of an uncivilized or an 
uncultivated mind ; the circumstance suggested 
of feeding on human flesh, on an emergency of 
the kind, may be considered rather as an exag- 
gerated figure of rhetoric of this very eloquent 
and illustrious patriot. 

His allusion to the invasion of Gaul by the 
Cimbri, or Kimbri, proves that the notion of 
that people being Celts, is altogether erroneous. 
Their being catted Gauls, by Appian, was from 
the circumstance of their invading Italy through 
Gaul, and coming from that country, they were 
so denominated in ignorance of their real origin. 

The account of Britain and Gaul we find in 


Diodorus Siculus,* is a valuable addition to the 
statements of Ceesar, and supplies much addi- 
tional information, as to the received opinions of 
his day. He was not, indeed, like Caesar, an eye 
witness of the facts he related, but still he is de- 
serving 1 of consideration and respect, especially 
when he speaks positively and appears to have 
no doubts, on his own mind, of the accuracy of 
his statements. There are some points, which he 
gives as vague reports, which should be so re- 
ceived with cautious doubt, or rejected altogether. 
In many instances his information was defective, 
for he states that the Danube empties itself into 
the ocean ; he, however, no doubt, gave what 
he believed to be true, and in many instances, is 
corrobated by other authorities. 

" As we have treated about the African ocean, 
and the islands therein, we will now turn our 
attention to Europe. There are many islands, 
lying in the ocean, opposite to Gaul, near the 
Hyrcynian oak forests, which we understand, 
are the largest in Europe ; one of which, and 
the most extensive of them, is called Bri- 
tain ; she formerly was unassailed by foreign 

* Lib. v. 21. 


power, (for neither Bacchus, nor Hercules, or 
any other of those heroes, or potentates, with 
whom we are familiar, waged war with her.) But 
Caius Csesar, who, on account of his actions, was 
called the godlike, in our times, was the first who 
reduced the island, and compelled the Britons to 
pay tribute. But we shall write about these mat- 
ters, more minutely, in their proper order. At 
present we will speak a little concerning the is- 
land itself, and also about the tin which the 
mines there produce. 

" The island has a triangular form, like Sicily, 
with unequal sides. Stretching itself obliquely 
towards Europe, there is a promontory next 
to the continent, which they call Kent, which 
is said to be about a hundred furlongs from 
Gaul ; and the sea makes also another, called 
Belerium, said to be four days sail from the con- 
tinent. The smallest side which is turned towards 
Europe, is seven thousand five hundred furlongs 
in length. 

" Those who dwell at the promontory of Bri- 
tain, called Belerium, are extremely hospitable, 
and, on account of the intercourse of merchants, 
more polished in their habits of life ; these pre- 
pare tin, worked with much ingenuity out of the 


earth, where it is produced, which, being sto- 
ney, has veins in it, from which they work the 
ore, and having purified it by washing, and 
smelted it, and formed it into small pieces, they 
bring it to an adjoining island named Ictis ; 
to which, at the reflux of the tide, the inter- 
mediate ground being dried up, they carry it 
over, on small carts, in great quantities. Thence 
the merchants, purchasing it from the inha- 
bitants, carry it over into Gaul ; and, making 
a pedestrian route through that country, for 
thirty days, placing their baggage on horses, 
carry it to the mouths of the Rhone ; but we 
have said sufficient for the present about the 

" Having now treated of the islands, lying 
towards the west, we think it would be right 
to say something, briefly, of the neighbouring 
nations of Europe, which we have glanced at in 
our former writings. 

" The winter season in Gaul, is continued 
clouds, which send down, instead of rain, snow and 
abundance of large crystalized pieces of ice ; 
wherefore the rivers are congealed, and form a 
kind of bridge by the peculiarity of its nature ; 
so that not only may flocks and passengers walk 


178 THE GAEL. 

across, but even thousands of soldiers, with their 
baggage and chariots, pass over with safety. 
Many large rivers take their course through 
Gaul, dividing the country by the variety of 
their windings. Some have their source in 
extensive lakes, and others in the mountains ; 
some make their discharge into the ocean, others 
into our own sea. The largest which flows into 
our sea, is the Rhone, springing from the 
mountains of the Alps, and empties itself by five 
mouths into the sea. Of those which discharge 
themselves into the ocean, the Danube and Rhine 
are thought the largest ; in our own times, Ceesar, 
who was called the godlike, united them in a most 
extraordinary manner ; and 4 having brought his 
forces across, subdued the Gauls dwelling be- 
yond them. There are also many other navigable 
rivers in Celtica, about which it would be too te- 
dious to write, but all being bound by ice, form 
bridges over their courses, and lest the ice, slip- 
pery by nature, might endanger those passing, 
they throw straw thereon that they may have 
a secure footing. On account of the excessive 
coldness of the climate, there being scarce an 
interval of mild temperature, the country pro- 
duces neither vines nor olives. The Gauls 
being in want of these fruits, make a drink from 


barley, which is called beer, (frflexr.) They also 
dilute honey in water, and this drink is very much 
used by them. When they can procure wine, 
which is supplied by merchants, they drink it 
to excess, and, unsatisfied with their draught, 
they are carried on to inebriation, overtaken by 
sleep, or seized with delirium. Wherefore, many 
Italian merchants, by reason of their avarice, 
turn the intemperance of the Gauls to their gain, 
for, in boats by means of navigable rivers, and on 
carts overland, they bring wine to them, and 
carry back a valuable return. For they re- 
ceive a slave for a cask of wine, the servant 
being bartered for drink. 

" In Gaul there is no silver, but great abun- 
dance of gold,* which is procured by the people, 
on account of the nature of the country, without 
the fatigue and danger of mining. For the course 
of the rivers being oblique, they strike against 
the bottom of the mountains, and tear down great 
heaps which are full of pieces of gold. The earth 
which contains the gold is collected, by persons 

* It is remarkable that among the articles of the precious 
metals found in Ireland', there are one hundred of gold to 
one of silver. 

180 THE GAEL. 

employed for the purpose, cut and ground, and 
being washed with water, the metal is committed 
to the furnace to be melted. In this manner 
great quantities of gold are procured, which the 
men and women wear in ornaments, for they 
wear bracelets on their wrists and arms, and solid 
gold collars on their necks, with beautiful rings, 
and golden breast-plates. There is something 
peculiar and strange to be remarked about the 
people of Gaul, with regard to their temples. In 
all the tempks, and the places of religious rites 
throughout the country, there is much gold scat- 
tered about, in honour of the Deity, which no 
individual, of the country, would touch, from su- 
perstition, although the Celtse are avaricious to 

" When they dine, they sit on the ground,* 
not on couches, and use, for a carpet, the skins of 
wolves, or dogs. They are attended by young 
people, both male and female, who have come 
to the age of youth. Near them are the hearths 
laden with plenty of fuel, whereon are cal- 
drons and spits, containing entire joints of ani- 

* A custom brought, no doubt, by their ancestors from 

the east, 


mals ; the choicest parts they give to the most 
distinguished ; as the poet describes Ajax when 
he returned victorious from his single engagement 
with Hector, * Ajax is honoured with whole 
joints.' They invite strangers to their feasts, and 
after supper ask them who they are. It is usual 
for those who meet to have contention of words, 
and, on provocation, to decide the matter by sin- 
gle combat, esteeming death as a mere trifle, for 
the opinion of Pythagoras prevails with them; 
viz. that the souls of men are immortal, and, 
after a term of years, enter another body and live 
again. Therefore, at the funeral of the deceased 
they throw letters written by his kindred on the 
pile, in expectation that they will be read by the 
dead. In their expeditions and battles, they use 
a two-horse chariot, which holds a charioteer and 
combatant. In battle they first attack their ene- 
my with the spear, then descend from the chariot 
to the conflict of the sword ; but there are some 
among them who so much despise death, that they 
rush naked to the battle, and are only bound with 
a girdle. They bring their free-servants with 
them, chosen from the poorest, whom they use in 
war, as drivers of their chariots, and as satellites. 
They very often run before the army, marshalled 
in order, and provoke the bravest of their adver- 


saries to single combat, shaking their arms to 
terrify the enemy. 

" They wear remarkable clothes ; coats of va- 
rious colours, as if interspered with flowers, and 
caligasses, which they call breeches ;* they fasten 
their coat of reeds , which is heavy in winter and 
light in summer, with clasps. They use a shield, 
which is of the length of a man, variegated 
with peculiar emblems. Some have images of 
brass projecting from them, made as well for 
defence as ornament ; besides, they fortify their 
heads with helmets, on which are great projec- 
tions, according to the fancy of the warrior ; for, 
to some, horns are affixed, others have the heads 
of birds or quadrupeds expressed on them. They 
also use a strange kind of horn, which they blow, 
and thence send forth a horrible but suitable 
blast.j" They wear iron breast-plates. Others 
are contented with the defences nature has given, 
and rush to battle naked. They carry ob- 
long spathas, or flat swords, hanging obliquely 
down their right thigh, from iron or brazen chains. 
Some secure their tunics with golden or silver 

* Braccatce. 

f Immense brazen horns, or trumpets, are frequently found 
in Ireland, sometimes five or six feet long. 


belts ; their spears are borne before them, these 
are called lances,* and their point of iron is about 
a foot long. Their swords are not smaller than 
javelins of other nations ; but their javelin has a 
point larger than the swords of others, part of 
which is worked in a direct form, and part with 
a curve, so that they may not only cut, in the 
blow, but also break, the flesh ; that, in the 
drawing out, they may lacerate the wound. 

" They are handsome in their appearances, but 
their voice is hollow and disagreeable. In their 
conversation they are brief and enigmatical, and 
generally adopt mere allusion. They speak 
extravagantly when setting forth their own me- 
rit, but with contempt in regard to that of others. 
They are imperious, vain, and fond of exagger- 
ation, but of acute understanding, and apt to 
learn. They have lyric poets among them, 
whom they call bards, who play on an instrument 
not unlike the lyre. Some they extol, others 
they defame. They have also philosophers and 
theologians, whom they denominate Druids, and 
these are held in great veneration. Soothsayers 
are in great repute among them, who, from aus- 
pices, and the intestines of victims, foretell the 

a spear, 

184< THE GAEL. 

future, and to them the people are obedient* 
When there is any thing of moment to con- 
sult upon, they adopt a most extraordinary and 
incredible rite, viz : they immolate a human 
being-, striking him under the breast, in the lungs, 
with a sword ; and when he falls they divine what 
will come to pass, by the manner in which he 
dies, and by the convulsion of his limbs, and also 
by the stream of blood. And this method has 
obtained credit among them, by observation, 
from the earliest periods ; nor is it lawful to per- 
form any sacred rite without the philosophers, for 
they think, by their means, as those conscious 
of the divine nature, and as having a sympathy, 
offerings are to be made to the gods, and by the 
means of their intercession, blessings are to be 
obtained. To them, both friends and enemies, in 
war as well as peace, are submissively obedient ; 
they often rush between the opposing armies, 
drawn out in battle array, and when their 
swords are brandishing, and their spears pro- 
jected, put an end to the conflict, as if subduing 
wild beasts by some charm. Thus, among the 
fiercest barbarians, anger yields to the voice of 
wisdom, and Mars respects the Muses." 

It is not necessary or expedient to enter far- 
ther into the history of Celtse of Gaul, before 


their conquest, or at all, after their final subjuga- 
tion and reduction to a Roman province, when 
they became as complete Romans in language, 
manners, and feeling, as the inhabitants of Italy 
itself. Their own language was apparently obli- 
terated, or reduced to the names of places. In 
the course of several centuries they amalgamated 
with their conquerors, and lost their original cha- 
racter, of which scarce a vestige remained. 



Collation of the Gaelic with the language of the People of 
Gaul Of the Acquitani and other neighbouring people Of 
the Rivers of Gaul Of the names of the persons of Britain 
and Gaul, at the Roman period People of Britain Of the 
River s t Estuaries and Promontories of Britain. 

THE Irish historians state that Golamb, or 
Milesius, the great leader of the Gael, in their 
invasion of Ireland, and the patriarch and an- 
cestor of their kings, had three sons, Heber> 
Heremon, and Ir 9 from whom they trace the de- 
scent of the principal families of Ireland, who 
called themselves after their supposed ancestors. 
O'Niell, O'Brien, O'Conor, Macmurrough, mean 
descendants of Neill, Brien, Conor, and Mur- 
rough, in the patriarchal manner of the He- 
brews, Ben-Reuben, Levi, Judah, Benjamin, 

188 THE GAEL. 

&c. and the Canaanites, the Edomites, &c. &c. 
Their very name of Gael, they alledge to be 
derived from one of their great ancestors, who 
was called Gaodhil, or <xob)l, pronounced Gael, 
the son of Niul, the son of Phenius Farsa, an 
ancestor of Milesius. 

This will more fully appear when the Irish 
history is under consideration ; but it may be 
well to observe, in this place, that it is a singu- 
lar and remarkable fact, that the descendants 
of Heber were found seated in Gaul in Caesar's 
day, under the name of Euberovices, children of 
Heber ; and York, the capital of Brigantes, was 
named after that tribe Eboracum, or Eberovicum, 
and the O'Neill's, or Ua Nell, under the name 
of Unelli. The tribe of JEed, or Hugh, under 
the name of ^Edui ; and the descendants of Ir, 
in that part of Britain, now called North .and 
South Wales, under the name of Silures, or the 
seed of Ir ; and Ordovices, children of Ir. 

The following collation of the names of the 
people, rivers, and places, of Gaul, and Bri- 
tain, with the Gaelic, it is conceived will, in 
most cases, carry with them conviction of their 
accuracy, even if some may appear not so palpa- 
ble and satisfactory. 



JEdui, or Hedui <xet>, Hugh, a man's name ; 
also an eye, a man of discernment. The Hedui 
were the descendants of Aed ; ua, descendants ; 
, of Hugh. 

Ambrones, a Helvetian tribe ; <xm, a people ; 
, a height or mountain. Highlanders, people 
inhabiting a mountainous country. 

Arverni <x/i, tillage j f ea/tn, good farmers ; 
now called Auvergne. 

Aulerci <xll, great ; le<^5, plain. The peo- 
ple of the flat champaign country about Chartres. 
There were Aulerci Cenomani ; ce<xn, chief, 
head, superior ; o, of ; m<x)n, heroes. The other 
were the Aulerci Euberovices, or the descendants 
of Eber, or Heber ; eBeji, Heber j bo, of ; mJc, 

Aulerci Brannovices the descendants of Bran. 
All residing on plains in different parts of Gaul. 
Aulerci ; <xll, great ; lea/tg, plain, or the inhabi- 
tants of the champain country on the banks of 
the Seine. 

Bajocasses bagac, warlike, a soldier ; cdf or 
c<ty-, a foot ; infantry, foot soldiers. The people 
living about Caen, in Normandy. 

Situriges Cubi baJtep, water j ^e^> plain, 

190 THE GAEL. 

open ; cuJbe, a spade. The wet plain country to 
the South of the Loire, now called the Depart- 
ment of the Cher and Indre. 

Bituriges T^ibisci pepba^, beautiful. The 
beautiful plains about Bourdeaux, now called the 

Boli BouxU, watery. The wet district above 
Nevers, on the Loire. 

Carnutes c<x/i#, an altar ; nimJb, new or re- 
cent. The place of annual meeting of the Druids 
for judgment, as described by Caesar. This place 
is now called Chartres. It was probably given 
this name when that place was fixed by the Gael, 
of Gaul, for that purpose, instead of referring 
matters to the chief Druids, and Brehons, of Bri- 
tain or Ireland. 

Corispiti co/i, a district ; J/*, under ; beJt, 
beech trees. The district of Beech. Part of 

Curiosolites cutye, a feast, bounteous ; /-ol<x- 
"c&fy provision. A rich and bounteous land. 
The department of Isle and Vilaine. 

Euberovices ebe/i, Heber, one of the sons of 
Milesius, a patriarch of the Gauls ; bo, of ; 
mJc, children or descendants. Pronounced Eber- 
ovic. The descendants of Heber. Mr. Whi- 
taker blunders sadly on this and other names end- 
ing in Trices, which he says means a brave peo- 


ple 9 but he does not say in what language. He 
was unacquainted with the Gaelic. 

Helvetii ell, a multitude or numerous tribe j 
, sinewy, strong in body. 

Latobriges Dot, hoary, frosty, white, grey ; 
, hills. Hills covered with snow. A people 
of Switzerland. 

Lemovices leom, a man's name ; o, from roJc, 
children. Descendants of Leo. 

Lexoviileozac, marshy. The people living 
in the low country on the Seine, now called 
the department of the Eure. 

Lingones Un, a boundary ; g<xn, extreme. A 
people residing at the extreme boundary, next the 

Mandubri m<xo^, a hero ; bub, black 5 fyj, 
a hill. The dark-haired heroes of the hill. 

Meldi m<xol, a hillock, or low eminence with- 
out trees ; bae, men. The country on the Marne 
river in Champagne. 

Nannetes n<xa, the ; aejt, warriors, or heroes 
of battle. The warlike race. 

Osismi u<x^, noble j nxxjc, great, illustrious. 
People of the northern coast of Britanny. 

Pictones, or Pictavii p)c)bac, spearmen. Peo- 
ple armed with spears. 

Ruteni /tuta, a tribe j J/?e, small. The little 

192 THE GAEL. 

Rhedones pete, a plain ; aba/7, a river. The 
plain country about Reimes on the Vilaine river. 

Santones ^an, old ; tan, country ; or y-ant, 
holy ; aban, river. 

Sedurii /-aob, a track way ; bun, a hill. The 
people residing in a mountainous country, with 
bad roads. A people of Switzerland. 

Segusiani ^eaga^ac, a woodsman. The peo- 
ple about Lyons. 

Sequani /^eanac, impetuous, furious. The 
inhabitants of what is now Franche Comte. 

Tulingi tuJ, a flood, or torrent ; Un^eab, 
leaping, dashing down. The people of the coun- 
try about the lake of Constance. The high moun- 
tainous country abounding in torrents. 

Tigurini teac ; a house ; guJ/iJn, spotted, 
or party-coloured. Party-coloured houses, pro- 
bably from the materials of which they were 
built. A people of Helvetii. 

Treviri tfieabaJne, a ploughman. Neighbours 
of the Hedui. 

Tectosages teac, a house ; bo, of ; pjJc, 
plenty, people with well furnished houses. 

Unelli ua, from, or derived of; nel, Neil. 
The descendants of Neill. The O'Neills. 

Urbigensis u/t, a valley ; fceJcac, weeping. 
The people of the valley of tears. 

J^eneti jran, a cliff, or declivity on a shore ; 
, battle or fight. 


Viducasses f <*b<xb,, kindling fire ; c<x^ or co^ , 
a foot. Foot soldiers armed with the means of 



Acquitani oJce, the sea; t<xn<\, country, or 
the country on the seas. Pronounced Oiketana* 
Acquitanian Gaul lies between the ocean and 
the Mediterranean* 

Allobroges <xll, great; fyuogoJbe, gorman- 
dizer, or eater ; also a boor, or farmer. The 
farmers, or great eaters. The people of Savoy 
on the Rhone. 

Cadurci c<vJb, stony or rocky ; oJce, water. 
People who lived on a rocky river. Cahors on the 
Garonne. The Cadurci Lucteri were from 
luct<U;ie, a whirlpool, or gulph on the river. 

Meduli mejbe, the neck ; bul, of fishermen 
with nets. The neck of land between the Gar- 
ronne and the sea. 

Nitobriges nJob, strong, able, prosperous ; 
b/iuagaJbe, farmers. People living on the Gar- 
ronne in Guienne. 

194- THE GAEL. 


Sequana The Seine river ; ^e<xc, frozen ; 
<xban, river, or the frozen river. 

Matrona The river Marne. The north fork 
or branch of the Seine ; moitaJ/i, mother, cause, 
i. e. chief source ; and <xban, river. Pronounced 

Oise, Iscauna Another branch of the Seine ; 
from uJ^ge, water ; <xb<xn, river ; or the smaller 

Liger The Loire river ; Uug<xb, slow, creep- 
ing. Pronounced Luer. 

Alduabis River <xl, a rock or stone ; bub, 
black ; or the black rocky river. 

Rhine, Rhenanus ;i)g, king or chief \ <xb<xn, 
river. Pronounced Reeaun. 

Rhone, Rhodanus /toJb, momentous, swift ; 
<xb<xfl, river Impiger fluminum Rhodanus. 
(Florus, lib. iii. c. 2.) 

Garumna zafi>, boisterous, rough, rugged ; 
<xb<xn. Pronounced Garaun, the rough river. 

Lemanus A river and lake ; le<xm, a boat ; 
<xb<xn, river. Lake, or river of boats. 

Dordogne, Durianus a branch of the Gar- 
ronne ; bo/ib, muttering, babbling ; <xb<xn, river. 
Pronounced Dordaun. 


Lot Branch of the Garonne ; tot, mud, or 

Tarn Ditto ; t<x/in<xc, noisy, thundering. 

Vilaine Runs into the Ocean, near La Roch 
Bernard ; r)[e, a port ; d.b<xn, river. 

Mayenne Branch of the Sarth, and Loire ; 
ma, clean, pure ; <xb<xn, river. 

Creuse Branch of the Veinne ; c/ieuc, red. 

Vienne Branch of the Loire ; fJonn, fair, 
pale, pleasant. 

Chere Ditto ; ce<Xft, red, ruddy. 

Oilier Ditto ; <xt, a stone ; Dog<xb, slow. 

Indre Ditto ; J^, a wave ; bu^t, water. 

Yonne Branch of the Seine. This is an ab- 
breviation of )^c5<x, and <xbar?. Pronounced Is- 

Saone Branch of the Rhone ; px, stream ; 
<xban, river. The smaller branch. 

Doube Branch of Saone ; bob, a stream, or 
small river. 

Isere, Isara Branch of the Rhone ; ")^je, 
water ; <x^t<x, a country. This is in Acquitanian 


Durance Ditto ; bab, black ; or bu/i, water j 

<xban, river. 

A great number of rivers of Gaul, have the 
Gaelic termination of <\b<xr>, or sLvon, or aun, a 
river, as it is pronounced by the Irish, viz : Se- 

196 THE GAEL. 

quana, M&trona, l&henanus, Rhodanus, Duri- 
anus, Vilaine, Mayenne, Vienne, Yonne, Saone, 
and Durance ; the Oise, is the Isis, Uske, and 
Wisk, of Britain. The foregoing- are the chief ri- 
vers of Gaul ; it is not necessary to enumerate 
the minor streams, quite enough is given to es- 
tablish the fact, that the people who gave those 
names, must have spoken the Gaelic language. 
Look at North America, and it will be found that 
the streams of that country are denominated 
Black River, White River, Great River, Little 
River. There could be no question what people 
conferred those names, neither is there any as to 
those of Gaul. 


Arviragus <tyt, tillage ; peapcaf, a husband- 
man, or farmer, or tiller of the ground. Agricola. 

Ambiorix <x)mbea^t<xc, mischievous. ; /i), 

Andragorius <xr>, one ; b/ioc<xJ/ie, evil hour. 
A man born in an evil hour. 

Boadicea Bu<xj, victory ; buJ^, jewel. The 
darling of victory. The queen of the Iceni, who 
destroyed 80,000 Romans in different battles. 

Cadwallader ce<xb, a hundred ; B<xll<xboty, a 
beater, or conqueror. The conqueror of a hun- 
dred men, or in a hundred battles. 


Catacratus c<xt, a battle ; o, in ; c/ie<xt, ter- 
ror. Terrible in fight. He was son of Cunobeline. 

Cartismandua ecitrdJ^, a guard ; beanab. 
Venutius. She kept her husband Venutius in 
prison, and governed in his stead, for which she 
was called Cataisbenaid, or the Keeper of Ve- 
nutius. She was queen of the Brigantes. 

Catamantalides c<xt<xJjJnf), I fight ; <xfltoJl, 
greediness, or the hero ever anxious for fight. 
He was king of the Sequani. 

Cassibelaunus c<x^, a man's name ; be<xU/7, 
little mouth. Cass with the little mouth. 

Carvilius c<xbJ/i, a man's name ; jrJle, a poet, 
or Cahir the poet. Cahir is a very common name 
among the Irish. 

Caracticus ca/i<ib<xc, a man of many friends, 
or followers. 

Cingetorix, or Cungetorix cJtr$e<to, valiant ; 
/iJg, king. There were many of this name. One 
king of the Treviri ; another of Kent. The name 
also appears with the prefix Fier, or fecx/i, a man 
in Vertingetorix. 

Cunobelinus cunna, friendship ; beat, amiable, 
or kindly spoken. 

Cogidunus cogac, war ; bu/?, a hill, or lofty 
warrior ; bu/7<xj, a host, or a host of himself in 

Critognatus c/ijteagflac, a terrifier. This 

198 THE GAEL. 

chief commanded at Alesia when it was besieged, 
and advised the garrison to live on the dead bo- 
dies of the slain rather than surrender. 

Cunedagius cune, a hound, or cruel man ; 
, hot-headed. The cruel hound. 

Cuneglasius cane, a hound, or cruel man ; 
grey. The brown or grey butcher.* 

Dumnorix buna) j, a host, or army ; 71)5, king, 
leader, king, or chief of the army ; or bun, a hill ; 
n a, of the ; /iJg, king. The high-minded prince. 

Galgacus jxxtgab, a champion ; or ^<xJ, a 
stranger or foreigner ; catac, fighter. Fighter of 

Immanuene JmnnanJm, I drive. A pursuer. 

Lucterius toctoJ/i, a reprover, or corrector. 
Lucterius of Cadurcum. 

Lugotorix luj, little, or swift j /iJj, king. The 
little or swift footed king. 

Mandubratius mcx^bac, a stammerer ; b/KXt, a 
judge. The judge with a hesitation in his speech. 
He was king of the Trinobantes ; or maon, a 
hero ; bub, black ; b/iac, crown of victory. The 
black-haired hero crowned with victory. 

Prasutagus b/taa^, a prince ; ut<xj, strife ; 
or the quarrelsome prince. 

* Gildas gives us this translation lailo fulve. 


Ogetorix oJ/tbea/ic, noble or illustrious * ? 71)5, 
king. King of the Helvetii. 

" Apud Helvetios longe nobillissimus et ditis- 
simus fuit Orgetorix." Caesar has here given the 
precise meaning as well as the sound. 

Segonax ^eggoJne<xc, a hunter, or killer of 
moose deer ; or /-ejgjon, a champion or war- 
rior ; <xc, skirmish. The brave skirmisher. 

Taximagulus t<xJce<xJmuH, firm, strong, stea- 
dy. He was king of Kent. 

Theomantius teonoa, dexterous, expert. He 
was father of Cunobeline. 

Togodumnus tog<xc, chosen ; bun, a hill. The 
tanist, or chosen on the hill. The heir to the 
throne. He was son of Cunobeline ; or tug, 
confidence, trust ; rjo,, of the, bunaJg, host or army. 

Venutius Bean<xb, blunt, easy. Pronounced 
Venud, king of the Brigantes, and husband of 

Vellocatus Be<xl<xc, large lipped or mouthed. 

Veredoctus j:e/ieb<xc, manliness, bravery ; a 
common name among the Irish. He was the Hel- 
vetian ambassador to Ceesar. 

Vergessilaunus fe<x/i, a man ; &a1f, expert ; 
pxettxfl, a spear. A hero expert with a spear. A 
commander of the Arverni. 

Viridomx jreoi/i-bo-jreJc, the man of sinew ; 
king of the Unelli, who lived about St. Maloes ; 

200 THE GAEL. 

ucx neH, or O'Neill's. This name is very common 
among the Irish. 

Fortigern j:o/<, above or chief; tjge/mxx, lord 
or king rvpawoa. Chief of men or sovereign. 
The king of Britain who invited over the Saxons, 

Centigern ceafj, a head, or chief; 
lord. Chief prince. 


Aitrebatii The people of Middlesex, Berk- 
shire, and Wiltshire ; <xt<x, a plain ; t/ie<xB<iJbe, 
ploughmen, or cultivators of the soil ; or <xt/ie<x- 
bac, a dweller, or inhabitant. 

Brigantes The people who inhabited all 
Yorkshire, except the peninsula, from the Hum- 
ber to the Derwent rivers ; all Lancashire, 
Cumberland, Westmorland, and Durham. The 
most hilly part of England from which they had 
their name ; b/iJj, a hill, or rising ground. The 
capital of their country was York, or Ebor- 
acum, called by the Saxons Eforwic, and by the 
Normans, Everwick, which plainly denominate 
the tribe of the Gael, from which they were de- 
scended, to be the tribe or children of Heber . Eb- 
erdovic ; el>c/i bo mte, the descendants of Heber. 


A branch of this tribe was found in Gaul by the 
name of Euberovices. (See page 17^0 

Caledonii c<\UJb, hardy, frugal; baojj?, people. 

Cantce The inhabitants of the Peninsulse, 
formed by the Firth of Dornoch, in Sutherland- 
shire. This ce<xn, ahead ; tJ/i, land, or peninsula. 

Cantii The people of the county of Kent. 
This is precisely the same meaning as the last 
ce<xn, a head ; and tj/i, land, a peninsula. The 
capital still retains the perfect Celtic name in Can- 
terbury. The Saxons called it Cantirland. 

Careni The north-west promontory of Su- 
therland ; c<xo/i, sheep ; J/?, country. The sheep 

CarmonaccB The south-west promontory of 
Sutherland ; cao^t, sheep ; r>eaj<xc, indented. The 
indented sheep walks. This name was evidently 
given by mariners from the sea ; its character is 
sheep plains much indented by little bays. 

Catyeuchlani, or Catileuchlani Huntingdon, 
Buckingham, and Hertfordshire ; cat, a tribe, <x, 
a hill ; leoj, a marsh ; lecma, a plain. A people in- 
habiting a country partaking of those qualities. 

Cerones c<xo/i, sheep ; <xb<xn, rivers. Argyle- 
shire, the sheep country intercepted with rivers. 

Coritani Leicester, Nottingham, Derby, and 
Lincolnshire ; ccty, a district ; Jc, corn j le<xwa, 
swampy plain ; or a swampy plain producing 


Cornavii Stafford and Cheshire ; co/i, a dis- 
trict ; naom, holy. Pronounced Cornav. The 
country belonging to the priesthood. The holy 
or consecrated country. The people of Caithness 
were also called Cornavii. 

Creones The south part of Rosshire. I 
cannot discover the etymology of this name, un- 
less it be c/i), clay j abaJ/7, rivers. The clay 
country with rivers. 

Damnii Sterling and Perthshire ; bam, an ox ; 
n), cattle, a country of herds, or people feeding 
cattle ; or bam, a tribe ; n7ab, strong, warlike. 
The warlike people. 

Dimetce Pembrokeshire ; bj, little ; mJbe, 
neck, or promontory. 

Dobuni Gloucestershire ; bob, a river or 
stream ; uan, dirty, frothy. The people residing 
on the dirty or frothy river Severn, the foulest 
water of England. 

Danmonii or Dunmonii Cornwall and De- 
vonshire ; bun, a hill ; maJ/?a, of metals. 

Durotriges Dorsetshire ; bu/i, water ; o, of, 
upon ; t/tJab or tr/iJag, lordship or principality. 
The kingdom or principality on the water. 

Epidii Argyllshire ; aJWbeac, huge, great, 
enormous. In allusion to the high mountains of 
this district* 


Gadeni Berwickshire, Selkirk, and Rox- 
burghshire ; g<*ot, wind ; bdoJne, people. The 
people who inhabit a windy country. 

Gangani The inhabitants of that part of Car- 
narvonshire, the extreme south-west peninsular 
of North Wales. These people are not men- 
tioned in Camden's Map. They were Ordo vices, 
but had the name of Gangani from their position ; 
<x/?, is without, or end, which repeated gan join, 
means the extreme end. The people of Clare, 
in Ireland, who were situated exactly similarly, 
were also called Gangani, by Ptolemy. There 
were Gangani at the land's end in Cornwall, in 
the north point of Caithness, and also in Spain, 
all precisely similarly situated. 

Iceni See Simeni. 

Logi Part of the Caithness ; log, a hollow, 
a valley. 

Mertce Part of Sutherland ^ md/it<x, oxen. 
Feeders of oxen. 

Novantce Wigtonshire ; no, exalted, high ; 
be<\n, or ben, head-land, or promontory. 

Ordovices The people of North Wales ; J/i, 
one of the patriarchs of the Gael, the son of 
Milesius, and brother of Heber and Heremon ; 
bo, of; mJc, the plural of Mac, a son. Pro- 
nounced Vic. So the Or do vie Latinized into 

20!< THE GAEL. 

Ordovices, were the descendants or tribe of Ir. 
See Silures. 

Ottadini Haddingtonshire ; <xot<xt>, cleanly ; 
baoJfle, people. People of clean habits. 

Parisi The south-east peninsula of Yorkshire, 
now called Holderness, from the Humber to the 
Derwent ; b<x/i, the sea ; Jo/-, upon. 

jRegni Sussex ; jiejg, plain, open. 

Selgovce Kirkudbright, Ayr, and Drumfries ; 
f]ol, a tribe, or people ; gobac, prating, talking. 
This definition is not so satisfactory as most of 
others, it being incapable of proof. 

Silures The people of South Wales ; ^Jol, 
the seed ; ty, of Ir. See Ordovices. These were 
the same tribe as the Ordovices, being another 
way of expressing the same fact. Both were of 
the tribe of Ir, and their names were Latinized 
into Silures and Ordovices. They are described 
as a swarthy Spanish looking people, exactly cor- 
responding with their Gaelic Phenician origin. 

Simeni or Iceni Suffolk and Norfolk, Cam- 
bridge and Huntingdon ; flwln, a rush. A coun- 
try overgrown with rushes. The Iceni were the 
people who lived on the coast ; oJce, the sea ; 
g<xr>, bounds. 

Texali Aberdeen and Bamffshires ; te<x , a 
house ; <xl, stone. People who live in stone 


Trinobantes Essex and Middlesex ; 
powerful, commanding ; o, of ; bai), tribe, or peo- 

Vacomagi Angusshire ; jr<xJce, a plain ; mag, 
a field. 

Venicentes Fifeshire ; p e)ne, a farmer or 
ploughman, an agriculturist ; ce<u?, head-land. 
The peninsula of Fife. 

The names of the tribes of North Britain are, 
without an exception, either expressive of their 
country or their peculiar habits, and were con- 
ferred on them by their neighbours, the Gael, 
who navigated the coasts of the whole island long 
before the Romans arrived in Britain. 


Abravannus <xb/i<x, dark ; <xb<x>?, river. Dark 

Adur Sussex ; <x, the ; bu/i, water. The water, 
or small river. 

Aire A branch of the Ouse, in Yorkshire ; 
, a fishing weare. A river abounding in fish. 

Alyn, and Aln Cheshire ; <il, a stone, and 
, river. Pronounced Alaun, a stony river. 

Anker Leicestershire ; <ib<xr?, river ; ce<x/t, red. 
Red River. Pronounced Aunker. 

206 THE GAEL. 

Anan a;?, the ; aba/?, river ; the river. Pro- 
nounced Anaun. 

Arun- Sussex ; a/t, tillage ; aban, river. River 
in a tillage country. Pronounced Araun. 

j^von Gloucester, Glamorgan, Sussex, Y/ar- 
wick, Devonshire, &c. c. ; aban, river. Pro- 
nounced Avaun, or Aim. 

Axe Isca ; oJce ; or u^e, water. 

Bam Lincolnshire ; ban, white, sparkling, 
waste, bad, desolate. 

Barle Devon, a branch of the Exe ; ba/tU/?, 

Birt beJjit, two. A branching stream. 

Blackwater Essex, called by the Romans, 
Idumania ; bub, black ; arnan, river. The black 

Blythe Northumberland ; bUt, grinding. A 
mill stream. 

Boldre Hampshire ; BoJtg, a bubble. A bub- 
bling stream. 

Bollin Cheshire ; boJlj, a bubble ; )/?, small, 
the diminution, termination. Pronounced Bol- 
leen. The little bubbling stream. 

Brent Middlesex ; b/teaJntrab, a fish stream. 

Browney Durham ; b/ionaj, a gudgeon, or 
small fish. 

Brue Somerset ; b/tu, a boundary. 

Cairn TVater Drumfrieshire ; ca/ir?, stoney. 


Calder Yorkshire ; c<xl, sleepy, quiet ; 
water. Slow heavy stream. 

Caldew Cumberland ; c<xl, sleepy ; bub, black. 
The black heavy stream. 

Cain Wiltshire ; callan, babbling. 

Cam Cambridge ; c<xm, crooked, winding. 

Camlad Shropshire ; c<xm, crooked ; Ub, water- 

Camel Cornwall ; c<xm, crooked ; <xl, a stone. 
The winding stony river. 

Cayle Somerset; caJle, narrow. 

Ceirog Shropshire ; c)<x/i, black ; oJce, water. 
Black water. A branch of the Dee. 

Cham Gloucestershire ; c<xo)o, pleasant, de- 

Chelmer Essex ; cat, sleepy ; moJ/ib, slow. 
The heavy stream. 

Cleddy Pembrokeshire ; cleJc<xc, craggy,rocky. 

Clwyd Flintshire, Clyde, or Clota, Lanark, 
Clytha, Glanmorgan ; cluJb ; an inlet, corner, 
or angle of the sea. An estuary. 

Cocker -Cumberland ; coc<xtye. a drain, or 

Coin Yorkshire, Colne, Herefordshire ; coJU, 
woody ; Jn, small woody river. 

Conway Carnarvonshire ; co^aboi??, a conflu- 
ence of rivers. 

208 THE GAEL, 

Cover Yorkshire ; coba/i, frothy, foamy* 
Cowin Carmarthen ; euJne, a course. 
Craig Lancaster, 

Crag Kent, J>C/K\J, rocky. 

Cree Kirkudbright, J 

Dane Cheshire ; bean, colour, from its water, 
or impetuous, from its rapidity. 

Dart Dorvatium ; fcuji, water ; feat, tranquil. 
Dee Wales, ] Dhu> ^^ bkck . Deya 

Dee Aberdeen, > . . 

I antient. 

Dee Wigton. J 

Derwent Cumberland, Derby, Northumber- 
land, Yorkshire, and Kent ; bu/i, water ; bearj, 
a hill or mountain. 

Don Yorkshire ; ba, good ; <xBcu7, river. Good 
river. Pronounced Daun. 

1 bobJb, pronounced Dovy, bois- 
terous, swelling ; called the 
Dove- Derby, I Stucda? fcy the Romanfl< 

&ovyW*le8. | from rtaajc? a little hill? or 
mound, promontory. 

Dwyrid Montgomeryshire ; bu/i, water; ftJbe, 
mire, or muddy stream. 

Eden Cumberland ; EDEN, Welsh, for a wing. 
Winged river. 

Elwy Flintshire, Elway, Glamorgan ; eKl, a 
precipice ; buJbe. Yellow river by a precipice, 

Endwall Herefordshire ; en, water ; noaol, a 


promontory, or headland, or bald ; i. e. without 

Erne Devonshire ; e<x/im<x, rustling ? 

Eske Dumfrieshire. Peebles ; "J^ge, water. 

Ewanny Glamorganshire ; Euain, (Welsh) 

Exe Devonshire, Isca ; ojce, water, tide. 

Foulmer Nottinghamshire ; jrojtl, slow ; noo/i, 
great. The slow large branch of a river. 

Fowey Cornwall \ jroboJb, lively, quick, rapid. 
Pronounced Fowey. 

Frome Hereford and Dorsetshire j pie<xm, a 
root, stream or branch. 

Gade Hertfordshire ; g<xb, an osier, or withe of 
sally ; the stream having those trees growing on 
its bank. 

Glengoner Lanarkshire ; gle^i), a valley ; 
gOflab, fascinating, delightful. 

Goyt Derbyshire ; ^oet, rushing, purging, 

Greta Cumberland ; Graid, (Welsh,) vehe- 
ment, rushing. 

Grunny Monmouth ; gft)<xn<xc, sunny, warm, 
or green ; 3/1)01/7, the sun who makes all plants 

Guash Lincolnshire ; 5<x^, danger, jeo- 

Gwain Pembrokeshire ; Gwaen, (Welsh). 
That flows. p 

210 THE GAEL. 

Owili Caermarthen ; Gwili, (Welsh.) Full 
of turns, of devious course. 

Heyne Devon ; Heini, (Welsh,) brisk, lively ; 
eJ/7, water. 

Heyl Cornwall ; eal, a swan. 

Humber York and Nottinghamshire ; aro, the 
earth ; b<x/\, the sea ; or the inland sea. The old 
Roman name was Abus, from <xb, a river, by way 
of eminence, the River. 

Idle Nottingham ; Jt, corn ; Jot, variety ; or 
the stream which passes through a country 
abounding in all kinds of corn. 

Irwell Lancashire; Ja/i, west; beat, sands. 
West sandy stream. 

Isis Oxfordshire ; )f ca, water. A branch of 
the Thames. 

Isle Somerset ; J/-M, private, low, secret. 

Itchen Hants ; Jt, corn ; ce<xn, cattle. A 
river in a corn and cattle country. 

Ivil~\ Bedford ; eJmJlt, tardy, slow. Pro- 

Ivelj nounced Evil. 

Ken Devonshire ; ce<xp, a head ; or ceafl, 

Kennett Berkshire ; ce<nn<xct, light, clear. 

Key Wiltshire ; c<xe, a hedge. 

Lachty Fifeshire ; Lach, (Welsh,) loose, flow- 

Lark Suffolk, \ beog, marsh, or a marshy fenny 

Lea Essex, J stream. 


Leen Nottinghamshire ; lean a, swampy, plain. 

Lemman-Vevov, | ^ aboat; ^ riyer 

Leven Lancaster, J 

.Liu Glamorganshire la, little, small. 

Lluchor Glamorganshire ; luc<U/i, clear, 
bright, resplendent. 

Lodden Wilts ; lob, muddy ; <xb<xn, river. 
The muddy stream. Pronounced Loddaun. 

Looe Cornwall ; lo, water. 

Lowther Westmorland ; lu<xba/i, quickness, 

Loyne or Lune Lancashire ; lu, little ; aBan, 
river. Little river. 

Lusrsr Herefordshire, 1 1 - f , , 

Vlaj, swift, rapid. 

Luke J 

Luce See Abravannus, Wigton. 

Lynher Cornwall ; UnJb, sluggish. 

Mar an Hertfordshire ; m<x^<xr>, pleasing. 

Maun Nottinghamshire ; maon, silent, dumb, 

Mawddach Merioneth ; ma, good ; b<xg, fish. 

Mease Leicester ; me<x^<xc, fishy. 

Meden Derby ; m)ab<xn, a meadow. 

Medway Kent ; m)<xban, a meadow ; uab, pri- 
vate, lonely. 

Mersey Lancashire ; muJ/i, sea ; <xl, a swan, 
or cormorant ; sea goose. 


Mite Cumberland ; Mite, (Welsh,) a shallow 
stream, or vessel. 

Nen Northampton and Lincolnshire ; nea/?, a 
wave or billow, or small stream. 

Nidd Yorkshire nfo, a battle. 

Okement Devon ; oJce, water ; menn, clear. 

Ogmore Glamorgan ; <x/ce, water ; mo/i, 
great . 

Oney Herefordshire ; on<x, slow, sluggish. 

Orr Kirkudbright, \ u/i, a stream running 

Ore Fife, J through a valley. 

Orwell Suffolk ; u/i, as above ; beat, a mouth. 
The mouth of a stream running through a 

Otter Devon ; <xt<x, a plain. 

Ouse Northampton, Cambridge, Sussex, and 
Yorkshire ; 7/~c<x, water. 

Ray Oxford 1 

Rea Herts, ^/ta, a running stream. 

Rea Worcester, J 

Reed Cumberland ; Rheed, (Welsh,) a run- 
ning or continued stream. 

Rib Herts, Rhiab, (Welsh), a dribble, a 
small stream. 

Ribble Lancaster ; Rhibiaul, (Welsh,) a drib- 
bling river, called by the Romans, Setantius ; ^ <xJt, 
rich ; aban, river. The rich river. 

Roch -Lancaster ; ;itmb, red. 


Ryther or Rother Sussex; fOot, a race, or 
running stream. 

Rumney Gloucestershire ; /tunxxc , a slough, 
boggy ground. 

Severn Sabriana : ^<x, a stream ; b/ie<xr?. dirty, 
muddy, filthy. 

Sid Devon ; pfob, silky, silvery. 

Silver Devon ; yJolBaji, fertile, fruitful. 

Soar Leicester ; ^uJ/Ae, water, river. 

Stoure Kent, Essex, and Dorset ; f toJ/i, 
stepping stones. 

Strine Stafford ; /-t/t<xn, lazy, slow, creeping. 

Stroud Gloucester ; ^t/ioca, a strand. 

Swale Yorkshire, yxxb<x)l, a barn, or granary, 
perhaps from a corn country. 

Toff- Glam organ , 

Tave Carmarthen, 

, sudden, enforcing. 

Taw Glamorgan, 

rp r A mountain stream. 

TowT )b - Thesea ' 


Tamar Devon ; t<xm<x7/ie, the sluggard, or 

Tay Perth ; c<xeb, a fall. 

Tees Durham ; t)o^, tide. 

Teign Devon ; teJjn, great haste, hurry, 

Teme Worcester ; teme, dark, black. 


Thame Oxford ; tame, quiet, gentle, still. 

Thames The junction of Thame with Isis ; 
> wa ^er. Thamesis. The gentle river. 

Tidi Devon ; teJb), going, flowing. 

Tiny South Wales, called by the Romans, 
Tucrobis, from tuat, north, and c/taob, branch. 

Tone Somersetshire ; toi), a wave, a billow. 

Towey Tobius ; taob^Ja^, the west. 

Trent -Nottinghamshire ; t/ij, third ; e/?, 
water, or stream. The third stream of the Hum- 

Trwduay Caermarthen ; Trwd, (Welsh), 
passing through. 

Tweed, Northumberland, called Alaun ; <xl, 
a trout or salmon ; atxu?, river. The salmon river. 

Tyne Northumberland ; teJgn, hasty, rapid. 

Verniew Montgomery ; jrea/ifl, aider tree. 

Voliba Cornwall ; moving, constant stream ; 

Usk Monmouth ; J^ca, water. 

Wainrush Oxford ; jreJrje, a boor, or far- 
mer ; puf, a wood. 

Wandle pan, declivity, steepness ; bat, a 

Wantsum Kent ; jran, declivity ; famap, a 

Water gall Warwickshire ; fata, a field, or 
plain ; guat, coal. 


Waveney Norfolk ; jraob, robber, or pirate ; 
, river. The river of pirates. 

Wear Durham ; fe<x/i, grass. 

Welland Northampton, Rutland ; f el, strife ; 
<xba>7, river. River of strife or contest. 

Wensum Norfolk ; jreJae, a farmer ; /-UIDCX/I, 
a spring. 

Werf Warwick ; buJ/ibe, full, bloated. 

Wey Surrey ; btdbe, yellow. 

Wharfe Yorkshire ; butybe, full, bloated. 

Wheelook Cheshire ; buJbe, yellow ; toe, lake. 

Wily Wilts ; buHJb, dark, death. 

Winson, or Stoke Norfolk ; buJije, rapid ; 
, river. 

Wisk 7^c<x, water. 

Wye Hereford, Derbyshire ; bu)be. 

Far-Isle of Wight,! called Gar 7 anum b 7 
- Romans ; W 5 ' boi 


J terous; <xm<xn, river. 

Yarrow Lancashire ; )<x/i, dark ; a/ia, country. 
Feo Somerset ; ea, a farmer. 
Yore, or Eun Yorkshire ; auriferous : o/tac, 
producing gold. 


Boderia or Bodotria Firth of Forth. This 
name is probably from the noise or roaring of the 
sea : bob<xJ/ic, is a deafening, or making a noise. 


Dunum Mouth of Tees ; bun, the hilly. 

Gabrantuicorum Sinus portuosus : <xb<x/i, a 
goat : <xB<xn, river. The river of goats. Pro- 
nounced Gabraun. 

Metaris The wash between Lincolnshire and 
Norfolk : ro)ob<x/i, good pasture. 

Tamissa, or Jamissa The mouth of the 

Portus Adurni Portsmouth : <x, the : bu/<, 

Cemonis Ostea Falmouth. 

Sabrina Bristol Channel: px, stream, or chan- 
nel : b/ie<xn, dirty, or foul. 

Moricambe The estuary between Lanca- 
shire and Westmorland: mc/J/ie<xc, a sailor, a 
mariner : c<xno, deceit. The seaman's cheat, or 
decoy, a name it well deserves. 

Ituna or Solway Jt, corn : <xm<xr>, river. The 
corn river. 

'Belisama Mersey. This was called after the 
goddess Belasamain, the queen of heaven, and led 
to the Cornavii, or holy district of Cheshire and 

Lemanus Portus, Hithe : le<xm, a rower : 
<xm<xn, river. The boat river. 

VectcB The Isle of WIGHT : jieJc, view, vision. 

Venta bean, a woman : te<xc, house. Pro- 
nounced Vantagh. The palace of a queen. 


Venta Icenorum, the palaces of Boadicea, queen 
of the Iceni. Venta Silurum. The palace or 
house of the queen of the Silures. 


Britain, at Caesar's invasion, was divided into 
a great many petty states, or governments, inso- 
much that the different interest of princes, was 
the source of continual dissensions. An antient 
author declares, (says Sammes,) without naming 

" That every one delighted in provoking quar- 
rels, that it was their daily exercise and pleasure 
to be skirmishing ; that they were continually 
going out in parties, fortifying and entrenching, 
many times rather cut of delight than any ne- 

Their custom of fighting in chariots, they de- 
rived, no doubt, from their Phenician ancestors, 
and their names for those chariots, are all Irish. 

Rheda /ieJb, a plain or level ground. Some 
of these chariots are armed with scythes, and 
were sometimes called Covini. Lucan calls one 
of them constrains covinus : now c<xom, is run- 
ning together : and caomJfl, would be a few run- 

218 THE GAEL. 

ning together, or small chariot carrying a few 

The Essedum, called by the Phenicians, Has- 
sedan , was another kind of chariot of war, to 
carry men quickly from one part to another. The 
name is from eJ^, a band : e<xb, protection, or a 
band protected by a chariot ; the drivers were 
called Essedariis : Irish, ej^eboj/i, a driver of a 
chariot, or one who fights in a chariot. 

The Carri, is the Irish c<i/i^, a cart for carry- 
ing the baggage. 

The Benna, Irish, ben, a vehicle, was rather 
a generic name for all carriages. 

The Britons fought in bodies called Caterva, 
similar to the Roman Legion, and the Macedo- 
nian Phalanx : cat, is bottle, and also a body of 
three hundred soldiers : and toJ/ib, is fuel or ma- 
terial : coLtotyb, material for use : cece^n. a troop 
of soldiers. 

" Among the antient Scots, the common sol- 
diers were called Catharni, or fighting bands. The 
kerns of the English (Irish), the kaetrine of the 
Scots lowlanders : and the Caterva of the Ro r 
mans are all derived from this Celtic word."* 1 

The Britons were very swift on foot. They 
had a shield and a short spear, in the lower part 

* Macpherson's Diss. 145. 


of which hung a bell, by shaking of which they 
thought to affright and amaze their enemies. 
They used daggers also. 

It is remarkable that almost all the brazen 
spear-heads, formed either in England or Ireland, 
have a loop for the purpose of suspending the 
bell to it, or perhaps a flag to frighten horses, 
like the modern lancer. 

The weapons of the Celtse were called Spat ha, 
Lancea, Sparum, Cateia, Matara, or Mataris, 
Thyreos and Get rum, or Cetra. 

Mr. Sammes gives many curious and learned 
guesses at these names ; the Spatha, he sup- 
poses to be a two-edged sword, under the Spanish 
E Spatha, &c. but I think incorrectly ; ^p<xb<x)m, 
is, / knock down. Therefore the /~p<xba was pro- 
bably a club, or mace of war. 

Gessum or Gcesum, was a dart which required 
address to use, by the cavalry ; gxxJ^cJb, is a war- 
rior on horseback, a cavalier ; <xJ/-ge, valour ; 
5<x)f, craft, cunning, generalship.* 

Lancea Irish, Uflf-oiJbe, a pikeman. Pro- 
nounced Lancea. 

* Galli per dumos aderant 

Duo quisque alpina coruscant, 
Gaesa manu, scutis protecii corpora longis." 

Virgil JEmid, viii. v. 660. 


Sparum ^pafi/'iaJm, I drive, or thrust, or 
pierce, probably a long spear. 

Cateia " All the commentators from old Ser- 
vius, and together with them, all the compilers 
of Dictionaries, have mistaken the meaning of 
that word. Cateia is undoubtedly of Celtic ori- 
ginal, and in the Gaelic dialect of that tongue, 
means a fiery dart." Macphersoji } s Diss. 853. 

r, a dart ; te<x/-, fire. 

Matara The Gaelic rcJobog, is a knife, or 


Thyreos Was a weapon with teeth like a 

saw ; t<x)neorj, is a saw. QeuMja* &w*> 


Cetrum The Gaelic cajt^eJm, is fame, vic- 
tory, triumph. It is probable this weapon received 
its name from having been , found an effectual 

The foregoing collations are conceived to be 
sufficient to establish the identity of the Britons, 
Gauls, and Irish, as people of the same origin, 
and with the former chapters establish them as the 
genuine Celtse, and that people as a Phenician 



The Gods of the Gauls and Britons, the same Druids 
Baals fire Moloch Taramis Teutates Camulus Baal 
Beal Belsamen Belatucadrus Moguntus Apollo Gra- 
nius Minerva Belasama Ardoena Diana Onvana 
Caer Paladur Adraste Draoiste Venus Divona Welt 
worship Barn breac, what ? Rev. Charles O' Conor. 

CJESAR, Diodorus, Tacitus, Suetonius, and all 
other writers agree, that the Gauls and Britons 
had the same deities^ and worship, and that their 
superstitions and religious ceremonies, were the 
same. The former declares, also, the Druids 
of Britain were the most eminent and learned, 
and, on that account, were, of course, referred to 
as authorities on all difficult questions. In fact, 
the focus of learning, the primacy of the reli- 
gion and philosophy of Druidism, was in the Bri- 
tish islands : thither the youth of Gaul were sent 


for education, as the -seat of learning and 

In speaking of the religion of the Gauls and 
Britons, Mr. Sammes says : " This consent of 
both nations, in the uniformity of worship, does 
not argue them to be of the same original, 
but is to be attributed to Druid interest, who, 
nevertheless, kept up their authority and inter- 
est on all hands." 

The religion of idolatry was not of a prose- 
lytizing nature, or likely to be changed, by any 
people, for another of the same cast of cha- 
racter: a nation often fancied a god, whose name 
was different, but whose attributes were similar 
to their own, to be the same, and therefore 
adopted him. There is but one species of evi- 
dence, of identity of origin more cogent than 
identity of superstition and objects of wor- 
ship, and that is identity of language, for no- 
thing is more difficult to eradicate in a people 
than religious impressions, and the objects of 
religious veneration ; customs of religious ob- 
servation of places, times, and seasons, continue 
long after the recollection of the objects of 
their institution are passed away. Thus we 
see in Ireland, at this day, fires lighted up on 


the eve of the summer solstice, and the equinoxes 
to the Phenician god, Baal, and even called 
Baal's jfire, be<xttJnne, though the object of vene- 
ration be forgotten, and is now transferred from 
Baal to St. John the Baptist. 

Moloch had seven chapels in his temples, and 
Persian temples of the sun seven gates. The 
Irish Baal and Moloch had the same mystical 
number of chapels in their temples, which, on 
the introduction of Christianity, were appro- 
priated to the uses of the new religion ; and 
seven churches are still to be found in many 
parts of Ireland congregated together, as at Glen- 
dalogh, Clonmacnoise, &c. &c, which places are 
designated generally by that name, and more fre- 
quently called Seven Churches than Glendalogh 
or Clonmacnoise. This number of churches in one 
place, could only have been caused by its mystical 
number, not by the wants of religious worship. 

Mr. Sammes says : c< The Gods of the Gauls, 
as Apollo, Minerva, Jupiter, Mars, Minerva, &c. 
were Greek gods> and idolized by the Briton with 
the same ceremonies as in Greece, and had the 
same offices ascribed to them : it is manifest they 
were introduced by the Druids, and worshipped 
in Britain, before Gaul, and from thence translated 


into that nation." I have not been able to dis- 
cover that they worshipped those gods by Greek 
names : they worshipped indeed gods, whose at- 
tributes were similar, and to whom the Romans 
gave those names, but they had their religion 
from the Phenicians, not from the Greeks, who 
themselves borrowed much of their theology 
from the same source. After the Britons became 
Romans, they added the Roman names, &s^4pollo- 
Grarmus, and Minerva-Belasama, Mercurius- 
Teutates, &c. 

The principal deities of the Celtae were Pheni- 
cian Baal, who was their favourite deity, Tara- 
mis, Teutates, Hesus, Belisama, Onvana, Ad- 
raste, Divona, &c. whose names and attributes 
are all expressive, and to be explained in Irish 

Taramis, or Taran, from the Irish 
a great noise, and totyneac, thunder. The god 
of thunder, or king of the gods, called also 
Moloch, by the Phenicians, and by the Irish, 
rcotc,j#re, to whom the Phenicians forced their chil- 
dren to pass through the fire. So did the Gauls 
and Britains to Taramis, and so do the Irish 
at this day ; on the fires of the Baltine, before 
alluded to, the children run and jump through 


them. Taram, in Phenician, is thunder. Lucan 

says : 

1 Et Taramis Scythicae non mitior ara Dianae.' 
' For upon his altars, human sacrifices were slain.' 

The Moloch of the Gauls seem to have been 
a refinement on the cruelty of the Phenician ori- 
ginal, for they made an image of a man of im- 
mense size, in wicker-work, and having- forced 
into it living human beings, surrounded it with 
inflammable materials, set it on fire, and thus 
burned the unhappy creatures alive.* 

Teutates, in Irish is bfo, god ; 2<xJt, the Celtic 
god of trade, one of the deified patriarchs of 
the Gael, of whom hereafter. Livy calls him Mer- 
curius Teutates ; and that Scipio, went up a 
mount, sacred to Mercurius Teutates, " where- 
by," says Mr. Sammes, " it appears the Britons 
and Gauls cast up mounts, and dedicated them 
to his honour, especially where many ways met. 
He was esteemed above all gods by the Druids/' 

" Mars was worshipped by the Gauls, under 

* Caesar, lib. vi. 


the name of Hesus, a nante of Phenician deri- 
vation, that is, Hizzus, by which name the Phe- 
nician, as well as British, called their god of war. 
He was likewise called Camolus, signifying, 
in Phenician, a lord or governor ;" in Gaelic, 
cam, is mighty ; oJl, arms, or mighty in war. 
Camden gives a coin of Cimobeline, with a 
head, a helmet, and a spear, and C.'A.M.U. 
From Camolus, the seat of government of this 
prince, was called Comolodunum, or the Hill of 

" Baal, beat ; BelnS) BeliJins, the sun. Apollo, 
the god of the Chaldeans and Phenicians, was 
also a chief divinity of the Celtee. In the 
Laconian dialect BcXa, signifies the sun ; and in 
the Cretick AjSeXioo-, as ffesy chins witnesseth, 
and all from the Phenicians. AfitXioa, is Apollo. 
Sometimes the Phenicians gave him a sirname, 
as Philo Biblius, out of Sanconiathon evidenceth, 
calling him Belsamen, the lord of the heavens." 
Mr. Sammes not understanding Gaelic, was 
ignorant that the Irish called this god by this 
very name of be<xl pUTxxJn, which has the pre- 
cise meaning in Gaelic as in Phenician the lord 
of heaven. 

Several altars were erected to Baal, by the 


Romans, after their conquest of Britain, which 
have been discovered at different periods; the 
inscriptions on some are given by Camden, but 
no correct explanation of their meaning has hi- 
therto been rendered. The Gaelic language sup- 
plies this defect. 

On an altar-stone, dug up near Kirby Thore, 
in Westmorland, is this inscription : 






Deo Belatucadro liberum Votum fecit lolus. 
To the god (beat tu<xt: c<xb/ie^c) JBaal, the friend 
of man. lolus made his free vow. 

On a second altar, found near Irby, in Cum- 
berland, is this inscription : 

V. S. L. M. 


Belatucadro (be<xl tuat c<xb/ie<xc) Julius Civilis Op- 
tio votum solvit libens merito. To Baal the 
friend of man, Julius Opt io, paid his free vow. 

Another ; 


LL. MM. 

Deo sancto Belatucadro Aurelius Diatova aram 
ex voto posuit lubens lubens merito merito. To 
the holy God Baal, the friend of man, Aure- 
lius Diatova, set up this altar most freely and 

These appropriate and distinguished epithets, 
applied to the Sim, or Baal, by the antient Bri- 
tish Romans, palpably Gaelic, are unanswerable 
evidences of the identity of the people of the 
two islands and Gaul, which the most unwil- 
ling and incredulous caviller at etymologies, can 
scarcely refuse to receive as conclusive. It 
* proves more, for it shows an identity of the dei- 


ties of the Celtse and the Phenicians, for which 
the reader is referred to Chapter II. Sammes 
attempts to account for the meaning of atuca- 
drus 9 in a most fanciful way ;' but my object is 
not to criticise that learned writer, who with in- 
defatigable industry collected facts from almost 
all the writers of antiquity ; but wanted the key, 
to explain their import, not knowing the language 
spoken by the people about whom he wrote. With 
his imperfect lights, however, he saw the truth of 
the Phenician origin of the Celtse, although his de- 
tails and conclusions were in most instances er- 

Two other inscriptions were found in the river, 
near Risingham, in Northumberland. The 
first : 

The second : 


Both these altars were to bl<x roaJg/ie c<xb/ie<xc. 
The great patron friendly God. The Pheni- 
cians had a god, called Baal Magon, or Dagon, 
which might be the same as this god beat 
The great lord. 


" In the lordship of Merchiston, near Ediribro,' 
was dug up an altar-stone with an inscription 
to Apollo Grannus" 

Camden gives this inscription, from an ac- 
curate copy by Sir Peter Young, tutor to king 
James I. (VI.) as follows : 







V. S. S. L. V. M. 

" adding who this Apollo Grannus was, and whence 
he had this name, none of the Society of Anti- 
quaries, that I know of, has yet informed us, but, 
if I may be allowed to interpose my inferior judg- 
ment, I should suppose that Apollo, called Gran- 
nus, by the Romans, was the same whom the 
Greeks called ATroXXwv A/cejoae/cojurjCj or the long- 
haired ; for Isidore calls the long locks of the 
Goths Grannos." 

Grian, is one of a great many Celtic names 
of the sun, and is still the Gaelic name, and, 
from his beams, /ieann<xc, signifies long-haired, 


which is the natural epithet for the sun in all na- 
tions. There is a mountain in Ireland called 
flelb na g/Oan, Slieve na grian, or the mountain 
of the Sun. 

The following inscription to Baal, at Palmyra, 
is very similar to the foregoing, and indicates the 
source from which the Celtic theology was de- 
rived, by the kindred epithets. Sammes says : 

" In Palmyra, a city of the Phenicians, there 
was this inscription, (which because it refers to 
this god Belinus,) I will put down : 


" To Agli Belus and Malak Belus, native 
or country gods that is, as some interpret it, 
to the winter and summer sun, for upon the mar- 
ble upon which this inscription was found, he was 
both ways represented ; but the Britons repre- 
sented him with a harp, as may be seen on a coin 
of Cunobelinus, and without doubt, had all the 
opinions of him as the Greeks and Phenicians 

On a stone found in Aquitain, was this in- 
scription : 

* Sammes. 


To Minerva the queen of heaven. 

Diana, (says Poly semis,) the Gauls, most especial- 
ly worshipped.* An image of Minerva was dug up 
in Monmouthshire, in 1602, girt about, and short 
trussed, bearing a quiver, but her head, hands, 
and feet were broken off. It was found on a 
pavement of tiles, in chequer-work, and an 
inscription to her honour was afterwards found, 
not far off. The aestuary of the Mersey, was 
called by the Romans JEstuarium Belisamce, 
and the river itself bore the name of Belisamum. 
Her name Ardurena, or Ardoena, is <*/ib, high ; 
bJon, protection. Ardoena, high, or illustrious 

Onvana, was a goddess of the Gauls, to whose 
honour a temple was erected in Bath, the site of 
which is now occupied by the cathedral. Mr. 
Sammes and others, suppose her the same as Mi- 
nerva, for no reason perhaps, but that this deity 
was a female, which the name literally means : 
<xn, the ban, woman, pronounced Onvan, the 
goddess or female deity. 

* Polyaenus, lib. viii. 


The name of Bath, among- the Britons, was 
Caer Palladur, and has been supposed to be as 
the city of Pallas. This is erroneous ; cataJ/i 
pala/~, pronounced Caer Palas, is literally the city 
qf the palace or royal residence. 

Andraste, is mentioned by Dio, as a goddess 
of the Britons. Mr. Sammes, says : " This was 
the goddess of victory, the British Amazon 
Boadicea called upon after her great victories 
over the Romans, having destroyed 80,000 of 
them, her words were these e I yield ye thanks, 
O Andraste, and being a woman, / call upon 
thee, woman.'' ' This deity was undoubtedly 
the Onvana of the Britons, for here Boadicea 
calls upon her by that name. I call on thee, on 
Ban, the woman ; buan o ambuan, was the mother 
of evil. Andraste and Onvana were the same. 

She was not the goddess of victory, but re- 
venge, ^tnbjtoy, was a fury, or infernal deity, of 
the Irish, and of course of the antient Britons. 
She was supposed by many to be Venus, and for 
a better reason than her sex ; Bana, pronounced 
tana, a woman, sounds somewhat like Verms, 
which name had certainly a Phenician or Celtic 
origin, for in Gaelic, its meaning is the goddess of 
beauty ; Ban, a woman ; be a/-, beautiful, pro- 
nounced Vandas, or Vanas, the beautiful woman. 


The name of Andraste, in its Gaelic com- 
pound is worthy of remark ; an, the SfiaoJ, witch, 
demon, or goddess ; also the drnidess, or magi- 
cian. 3D/KXOJ^, is also sensual desire, therefore 
<xnb/i<xoj;-, may mean Venus, in her attribute of 
goddess of love. 

The attributes of Venus Pallas, and even 
Diana, may have all been attributed to Andraste, 
and the similarity of name with Astarte (or As- 
taroth) of the Phenicians, favours the Phenician 
origin of the Celtse. 

The Phenicians, according to Pausanius, wor- 
shipped their Venus, armed with a spear, as the 
goddess of war. The Lacedemonians also put 
up her statue in armour. 

" Armatam vidit Venerem Lacedemone Pallas." 


The Romans also had a temple to Venus Vic- 
trix, at Camalodunum, or Maiden, in Essex. 
Tacitus says : " The statute of Victory at Cama- 
lodunum, of itself, fell down backwards, as if 
it yielded to its enemies." 



The Celtae were much addicted to the worship 
of fountains and rivers, as divinities. They had 
a deity called Divona, or the river god. 

" Divona Celtarum lingua fons addite Divii.'' 


, god : <xb<x/?, river. Pronounced Divaun, 
or the river god. 

The History of St. Patrick, which is prefixed 
to the antient copy of the New Testament, com- 
monly called the Book of Armagh, a MS. of 
the 7th century, contains the following passage : 

11 And he (St. Patrick) came to Fina maige, 
which is called Slane, because it was intimated to 
him that the magi honoured this fountain, and 
made donations to it, as gifts to a god." " For 
they sacrificed gifts to the fountain, and wor- 
shipped it like a god"* 

* Et venit ad Fontem Finmaige, qui dicitur Slan, quia 
indicatam illi quod honorabant magi fontem et immolave- 
runt dona ad ilium in donum dii." 

" Quia adorabant fontem in modum dii." 

Irish Antiquarian Researches Appendix xxix. 


Every one who has been in the country parts 
of Ireland, must have observed, either the devo- 
tees on their knees at the holy wells, or the votive 
rags hung- on the branches of the trees, or shrubs, 
which surround it, 

The writer of the " Traits and Stories of the 
Irish Peasantry," gives a vivid description of a 
pilgrimage to a holy well, which is certainly 
not overcharged. With what obstinate perti- 
nacity these antient customs are adhered to, 
and how readily is the worship transferred 
from Baal, to St. John the Baptist, and from 
Belasama to the Virgin Mary, to whom the 
old title of queen of heaven has been trans- 
ferred : even the cakes which the idolatrous Jews, 
in imitation of the Phenicians, made in honour 
of the queen of heaven are still the most popular 
cake in Ireland under the old name of ba^o fye<xc. 
The barti brack, or speckled cake. 

The late Rev. Charles O'Connor, in his third 
letter of Columbanus, gives a very interesting 
statement of Irish well-worship, in a letter ad- 
dressed to his brother, the late Owen O'Con- 
nor Don. He says : 

/ " I have often inquired of your tenants, what 


they themselves thought of their pilgrimages to the 
wells of Kill-Archt, Tobbar- Brig fide, Tobbar 
Muire, near Elphin,andJ/00re, near Castlereagh, 
where multitudes assembled annually to celebrate 
what they, in broken English, termed Patterns, 
(Patron's days) : and when I pressed a very old 
man, Owen Hester, to state what possible advan- 
tage he expected to derive from the singular cus- 
tom of frequenting in particular such wells as were 
contiguous to an old blasted oak, or an upright 
unhewn stone, and what the meaning was of 
the yet more singular custom of sticking rags 
on the branches of such trees, and spitting on 
them, his answer, and the answer of the oldest 
men, was, that their ancestors always did it ; that 
it was a preservative against Geasa-Draoidecht, 
i. e. the sorceries of Druids ; that their cattle 
were preserved by it from infectious disorders ; 
that the daoini maithe, i. e. the fairies, were 
kept in good humour by it ; and so thoroughly 
persuaded were they of the sanctity of these 
Pagan practices, that they would travel bare- 
headed and bare-footed from ten to twenty miles 
for the purpose of crawling on their knees round 
these wells, and upright stones, and oak trees, 
westward, as the sun travels, some three times, 
some six, some nine, and so on, in uneven num- 
bers, until their voluntary penances were com- 

238 THE GAEL. 

pletely fulfilled. The waters of Logh- Con were 
deemed so sacred from antient usage, that they 
would throw into the lake whole rolls of butter, 
as a preservative for the milk of their cows 
against Geasa-Draoideacht ! 

" The same customs existed among the Irish 
colonies of the Highlands and Western Islands ; 
and even in some parts of the Lowlands of Scot- 
land. ' I have often observed,' says Mr. Brand, 
* shreds, or bits of rags, upon the bushes that 
overhang a well in the road to Benton, near New- 
castle, which is called the Rag-well?* Mr. Pen- 
nant says, * they visit the well of 8pye, in Scot- 
land, for many distempers, and the well ofDrach- 
aldy^ for as many, offering small pieces of money 
and bits of rags.'t 


" From my earliest days, I recollect having 
expressed my wonder at these customs of our 
countrymen ; and our good Dr. M'Dermot, of 

* Brand's Popular Antiquities. Newcastle, 1777, p. 100. 

t bftAOJce, druids ; <Ult, high place ', or house. The 
high place, or house of the Druids. 

f Pennant's Tour in Scotland. Shaw's Hist, of Moray, 
p, 177. Martin's Western Islands. Lond. 1703, p. 7, and 140. 


Coolavin, will recollect a conversation on this 
subject, in which he agreed, that they are of Phoe- 
nician origin, and contribute, with many other 
proofs, to demonstrate the progress of population 
from the East to the West. 

" * The worship of fountains,' says Stanley, 
' may be traced to the Chaldeans. Besides the 
three orders of Intellectuals, which Psellus styles 
seven fountains, and the anonymous Summarist, 
Fountainous Fathers, the latter gives an account 
of many other fountains, and they reverence, 
saith he, material fountains, and next after these 
the principalities.'* 


A passage from Hanway's travels leads di- 
rectly to the oriental origin of these Druidical su- 
perstitions : * We arrived at a desolate Caravan- 
serai, where we found nothing but water. I ob- 
served a tree with a number of rags to the 
branches. These were so many charms, which 
passengers, coming from Ghilaw, a province re- 
markable for agues, had left there, in a fond ex- 
pectation of leaving their disease also in the same 

* Stanley's Chaldaic Philos. p. 23. 

f Hanway's Travels, Lond. 1753, vol. I. p. 177, and again 

240 THE GAEL. 

From Chaldea and Persia, well-worship pass- 
ed into Arabia, where the well of Zimzim, 
at Mecca, was celebrated from the remotest ages, 
antecedent to the days of Mahomet ^ thence into 
Egypt and Lybia, celebrated for the sacred foun- 
tain of Jupiter Ammon, named Fons Solis by 
Pliny ; and thence into Greece, Italy, Spain, and 
Ireland.* ' Of all people,' says S. Athanasius, 
' the Egyptians are the most addicted to the wor- 
ship of fountains, holding them as divine.t Now 
the Egyptian superstitions travelled westward 
from Chaldea to Egypt, and from Egypt into 

" Pursuing this western course, in the track 
of primeval population, we find Numa's Fons 
Egerice, the Fontinalia Romana, the Aqua Fe- 
rentince, and the adjoining sacred grove where 
the Ferice Latince were celebrated. Now these 

* Seneca says, " Magnorum fluviorum capita veneramur, 
" coluntur aquarum calentium fontes, et qusedam stagna, quae 
" vel opacitas, vel immensa altitude sacravit." Seneca, Ep. 

f S. Athanas. contra Gentes, p. 2. 

{ On this progress from Egypt to Greece all the learned 
are now agreed. See Eusebii Chron. p. 11, and Josephus 
against Appian, 1.1. Tradidit ^gyptis Babylon, jtEgyptus 

Liv. 1. 1, c. 49. 


waters and grove were considered as possessed of 
inherent divinity, ' cui numen etiam et divinus 
cultus tributus fuit,'* and the Fontinalia of Pa- 
gan Rome were celebrated, as were those of the 
Irish Sceligs, about the atumnal equinox.t 

" It is remarkable, that well-worshipping exists 
now in no part of Italy, where it is abolished by 
Christianity ; and yet that it exists amongst the 
clan hua Bhascoine of Ireland, as it existed 
anciently amongst the Gascons and other tribes 
of Iberia, from whom the ancient Irish Hhas- 
cons are undoubtedly derived. Gruter gives an 
inscription, ' Vasconise in Hispania, Fonti di- 

" The Greeks relate that Perseus, the most 
ancient of their heroes, conquered Egypt, Ly- 
bia, and the nations about Mount Atlas, which 
he and Hercules only are said to have passed ; 

*Cluver. Ital. 1. 2, p. 719. 

f In the Pagan Calendar of Rome, the Fontinalia were 
marked 4to Id. Octobr. as in the antient Fasti, published by 
Fabricius. Now the Irish Scelig Fontinalia, were celebrated 
on the 29th of September. 

J Gruter. Inscript. vol. 1. p. xciv. 

' Atlas Apex Perseo and Herculi pervius.' Solinus, 
c. 24, and Schol. Vet in. Lycophr. v. 838. 


that thence he carried his conquests beyond the 
Pillars of Hercules into Iberia ; that he subdued 
the Iberians of the provinces surrounding the 
Phoenician city of Tartessus, the Tharshish of the 
Scriptures ; that his wife was Asterie, the daughter 
of Baal, the Astarte of Tyre, of Sidon, and of 
Carthage ; that he taught mariners to steer by the 
polar star, whereas before they steered very 
vaguely by the Great Bear ; and that some sacred 
wells in the vicinity of Carthage were from him 
named the wells of Perseus.* 

" The connection of this worship with the his- 
torical traditions of the Pagan Irish is so evident, 
and so extensive, that it affords a subject of use- 
ful and pleasing discovery, as it strongly illustrates 
the Mosaic account of the progress of population 
from the plains of Sennaar to the western extre- 
mities of Europe, and exposes, in a very forcible 
manner, the futility of those ridiculous systems, 
by which Bailly and the French Revolutionists 
have endeavoured to account for the origin of 

* Excerpta ex Diodori Libro, 40, apud Photium, in Bib- 
lioth. p. 1152. Ovid. Trist. 1. 1, Eleg. 3, v. 48. Natalis 
Cc^es, 1. 7, c. 18. Strabo, 1. 17, p. 1168. Diodor. 1. 1, p. 21. 
Chronicon Paschale, p. 38. Herodot. 1. 6, c. 54. 


man, tracing his progress from N. to S. in direct 
opposition to all the histories, all the traditions, 
and all the vestiges of ancient nations ! 

" Facciolati observes from Gruter,that in Pagan 
times fountains were consecrated to Baal.* Pau- 
sanias says, that at Phaerse, in Achaia, was a foun- 
tain sacred to Hermes, which was called Hama, 
near which were thirty large upright stones, 
erected in remote ages, when, instead of images, 
the Greeks adored unhewn stones.t Now, such 
precisely was the religion of Pagan Ireland. To 
this day, the word used for a pilgrimage by the 
common Irish is Ailithre. So the Annals of the 
Four JVftsters say, that ' Arthgal, son of Cathal, 
king of Connaughfc, took the penitential staff, and 
travelled to Hiona dia ailithre,' i. e. on his pil- 
grimage.t This word Ailithre is composed of 

* Gruter, n. 3, p. 37. Facciolati at the word Belenus. 

f Pausan. 1. 7. p. 579. 

J IV Masters 777. Bede notices this Irish word Ail, 
1. 1, c. 12, where he says that the name Al-Cluitli signified 
in Irish the Rock of Cluid. The ancient writer of the 7th Life 
of S. Patrick says, in his 2d book, c. 38, that El-phin, pro- 
perly Ail-fin, is so called from Ail, a stone, and Jin, white, 
for there was anciently adored an immense stone which stood 
near a limpid fountain. * Fons lucidus, & ad ejus margincm 


<x)l, a great upright rock or stone, and 
to go round ; and there is no name in the Irish 
language for the pilgrimages of Christians to 
Hiona, or to Jerusalem, or to Rome, but that 
identical word Ailithre, which was used by the 
Pagan Irish for a pilgrimage to the sacred stone 
of the Came, or of the Tobar, the emblematical 
God of the Druids. 


"The well- worship of the Scelligs on the coast 
of Kerry, in that part of Ireland which was first 
invaded from Spain, is accurately described by 
Smith, but without any attempt to account for its 
origin, or to trace its antiquity. 

" ' S. Michael's well near Ballynascellig, on the 
coast of Kerry, is visited annually, every 29th of 
September, by a great concourse of people, some 
of whom bring their sick, blind, and lame friends 
to be healed by this miraculous water.'* Now 

ingens lapis. Ail enim, prisca lingua Hibernica, Saxum de- 
notat. Unde Ail-Jin idem sonat quod Saxum lucidi fontis.' 
In Triade, p. 134. The royal seat of the kings of Ulster was 
Aileach, about three miles from Derry, nearly where the sa- 
cred stone of inauguration was venerated down to the 15th 
century, as in Speed's Map. 

* Smith's Kerry, p. 103 and 1 13. Keating is good autho- 
rity for the existence of the Scelig pilgrimages in his own 


S. Michael's festival, (September 29th,) concurs 
with the autumnal equinox, and consequently, 
with the autumnal sacrifices and Baal-ti7iiies of 
the Druids ; and it is observable, that the largest 
of the Scelig Islands off that coast, wherein are 
"two sacred wells, the most celebrated, perhaps, 
of all Ireland, is named Scelig Michael, or S. 
Michael's Scelig 1 ; that the sacred promontory, 
called the Scillean, in Greece, has been also de- 
dicated to S. Michael, and is now called Cape S. 
Angelo ;* and that many other craggy promonto-x 

times. Eochoid, an Irish bard of the 9th century, whose 
compositions, in the Irish language of that period, are pre- 
served in the Marquis of Buckingham's library, says, that Ir, 
the son of Mil-Espaine, one of the leaders who conducted 
the Scoti from Spain to Ireland, was wrecked on this island. 
Smith mentions the miraculous well of Glen-ore, in his Corke, 
1. 1. p. 351. ' Over it is a large old tree, on the boughs of 
which an infinite number of rags of all colours are tied.' 
The same takes place at Ball., or Baal, in the county of 
Mayo, where are two small chapels vaulted over the river 
which runs through the town, where immense swarms of peo- 
ple attend on the same day, and perform circuits on their 
knees in expiation of their sins, and conclude the day with 
feasting. It is said not less than 300 sheep are consumed on 
these occasions. It is to be observed that this worship of 
Baal is held on the day of one of his great festivals the au- 
tumnal equinox ! ! ! W. B. 

* Voyage Pictorcsquc do la Grccc. 


ries, formerly celebrated for Druidic sacrifices of 
human offerings made to the Devil, and for lus- 
trations and wells of Druidic worship, have been 
by the foundations of monasteries on them, dedi- 
cated to S. Michael, to abolish the Pagan rites and 
ideas which they recalled. Such was S. Michael's 4 
Mount, near Penzance, in Cornwall, and such 
S. Michael's, on the coast of Armorican Britanny, 
dedicated to S. Michael, in the 6th century. 

"The annals of Inisfallen, Tigernach, and the 
Four Masters, agree that a monastery was founded, 
in the largest of the Irish Sceligs, in honour of 
S. Michael, by S. Finian, who flourished in the 
6th century ; that the Danes plundered and des- 
troyed that monastery, A. D. 812 ; that it ,was 
rebuilt in 860 ; that Flail Mac Ceallig, was 
Abbot in 885, and Blathmac, Abbot in 950.* 
Subsequent Danish invasions compelled the monks 
to abandon the Sceligs altogether, and remove to 
the opposite coast of Kerry, where they founded 
the abbey of Ballynascellig, or S. Michael's, in 
the barony of Ivereach, which appears to have 
been a very noble and extensive edifice of the 
1 1 th century. 

* See also the Anonymous Irish Annals quoted from Tri- 
nity College Library, by Archdal, Monast. Hibern. p. 301, 
307. Compare Colgan. Acta, p. 57, n. 2, & 129, n. 3. 


" The ruins of the monastery of Scelig Michael, 
much more ancient than those of Ballynascellig, 
are mentioned by Giraldus,* and are yet visible 
on a flat in the centre of the island, about fifty 
feet above the level of the sea. This flat consists 
of about three Irish acres, and here are several 
cells of stone, closed and jointed without any ce- 
ment, impervious to the wind, and covered in with 
circular stone arches. Here also are the two clear 
fountains, where the pilgrims, who, on the 29th 
of September, visited the island in great numbers, 
repeated stationary prayers, preparatory to their 
higher ascent. 

" The island is, as Keating truly states, an im- 
mense rock, composed of high and almost inac- 
cessible precipices, which hang* dreadfully over 
the sea ; having but one very narrow track lead- 
ing to the top, and of such difficult ascent that 
few are so hardy as to attempt it. The Druidic pil- 
grim, however, having made his votive offering 

* Topogr. Hib. Dist. 2, c. 30, where he mentions also the 
sacred wells of the Scelig-Michael. It is impossible not to 
feel the force of the observation, that at both the Scyllean 
Promontories of Greece and Italy, as well as at the great 
Scelig of Ireland, there were sacred fountains, which were 
supposed to be enchanted, and were adored, and that they 
all have reference to the worship of Baal: 

248 THE GAEL. 

at the sacred wells, proceeded to adore the sacred 
stone at the summit of the most lofty precipice on 
the island. 

" At the height of about 150 feet above the sea, 
he squeezed through a hollow chasm, resembling 
the funnel of a chimney, and named the Needle's 
Eye, an ascent extremely difficult even to per- 
sons who proceed barefooted, though there are 
holes cut into the rock for the purpose of facili- 
tating the attempt. When this obstacle is sur- 
mounted, a new one occurs ; for the only track 
to the summit is by an horizontal flat, not above 
a yard wide, which projects over the sea, and is 
named in Irish, leoic <xn t>oc^a, the stone of pain. 

The difficulty of clinging to this stone is very 

great, even when 4he weather is calm : but when 
&* ** * 

there is any wind, as is commonly the case, the 

danger of slipping, or of being blown off, united 
with the dizziness occasioned by the immense per- 
pendicular height above the level of the sea, is 
such as imagination only can picture. When this 
projecting rock, about twelve feet in height, is 
surmounted, the remaining way to the highest peak 
is less difficult. But then two stations of tremen- 
dous danger remain to be performed. The first 
is termed the station of the Eagle's nest, where 
a stone cross was substituted by the Monks for the 


unhewn stone, the object of Druidic worship, 
which required the previous lustrations and ablu- 
tions of the sacred wells. Here, if the reader 
will fancy a man perched on the summit of a 
smooth slippery pinnacle, and poised in air about 
450 feet above the level of the sea, beholding a 
vast expanse of ocean westward, and eastward the 
Kerry mountains, which he overlooks, he may 
form some idea of the superstitious awe, which 
such tremendous Druidic rites were calculated to 
inspire ; and yet many pilgrims have proceeded 
from this frightful pinnacle to the second, the 
most whimsical, as well as the most dangerous 
that even Druidic superstition ever suggested. 
It consists of a narrow ledge of rock which pro- 
jects from the pinnacle already mentioned, so as 
to form with it the figure of an inverted letter 
L, projecting horizontally from the very apex of 
the pinnacle several feet, itself not being above 
two feet broad!* This ledge projects so far, as 

* Ecce ingens fragmen scopuli quod vertice summo 
Desuper impendit, nullo fundamine nixum. 
Decidit in fiuctus Maria undique et undique saxa 
Horrisono stridore tenant, & ad sethera murmur 
Erigitur, trepidatque suis Neptunus in undis. 
Sed cum ssevit hyems, et venti, carcere rupto, 
Immensos volvunt fiuctus ad culmina mentis, &c. 

250 THE GAEL. 

to enable him who would venture on it, to see the 
billows at the distance of 460 feet in perpendicu- 
lar, and the sea here is 90 feet deep, so that the 
largest man of war may ride in safety at anchor 
underneath ; and yet to this extreme end the 
pilgrim proceeded astride upon this ledge, until, 
quite at its utmost verge, he kissed a cross, which 
some bold adventurer dared to cut into it, as an 
antidote to the superstitious practices of Pagan 
times \s 


" It is impossible to read these accounts without 
noticing their connection with the religion of Baal. 
The ce/g*s, or Scillies of Ireland, are off Cape 
l?0/ws ; those of England are off Cape Beleriwm; 
both stand in a western course from Cape JBele- 
rium in Spain ; and both were, at a remote period, 
the S. Western Sceligs, i. e. sacred Seacliffs,* 
which first presented themselves to the Phoenician 
discoverers of the British Islands. 

* I would rather say ^C<xl, noisy U<*, rocks, from the 
noise made by the sea, and the violent current, if the cir- 
cumstances of the temple and the name sacrum promonto- 
rium, did not favour Dr. O'Connor's definition. W. 13. 


" In the remote ages of Phoenician commerce, 
all the western and south-western promontories of 
Europe were consecrated by the erection of pil- 
lars, or temples, and by religious names of Celtic 
and primaeval antiquity : this is expressly stated 
by Strabo.* These sacred head-lands multiplied 
in proportion as new discoveries were made along 
the coasts, and that to such a degree, that Di- 
cearchus, Eratosthenes, and others quoted by 
Strabo, were at a loss to ascertain which were the 
genuine original Pillars of Hercules. 

" Every promontory named Scylla, or Scylleum, 
in Greece and Italy, in the British and the Irish 
Seas, is distinguished by temples, religious tradi- 
tions, primaeval religious names, and sacred foun- 
tains of the remotest antiquity. That of the 
Peloponnesus was supposed to be near the en- 

* His words are remarkable. He states that this was a 
usual custom amongst the ancient navigators. Casaubon's 
Strabo, Amsterdam, 1707, t. 1. p. 395, 1. 6, c. 257 ; and again, 
p. 407, c. 265. He had already mentioned it from the works 
of the antient geographers, 1. 3, p. 258, c. 170, p. 259, c. 171 ; 
and he repeats it, t. 2. 1. 1 0, p. 459, p. 705 ; so that this fact 
rests not upon etymology only, but on historical evidence. 
The sacrum promontorium, or S. western headland of Iberia 
antiqua was Cape S. Vincent. That of Ireland was Carne- 
soir point, as stated by Ptolemy. 


trance into hell. " Hermionse in Argise litore. 
Inde brevis ad inferos descensus. Huic vicinum 
est Scijlleum Promontorium,"* That of Italy, 
opposite to Cape Pelorus, is well known for the 
fabulous traditions of Virgil and Ovid, who only 
adorned the real histories of religious rites by 
poetical fancies of their own ; for on the rock of 
Scylla a magnificent temple anciently stood, and 
an oracle, and the sacred fountain of Circe were 
adored, where mariners made votive offerings to 
the Infernal Gods, long before the fables of Virgil 
or Ovid were known, t 

"On the introduction of Christianity, the name 
and the festivals of the Druidic divinity, his hu- 
man sacrifices and horrid rites were abolished, 
and the worship of S. Michael Archangel was 
substituted on these lofty Sceligs in their stead, 
he being considered the chief of heavenly spirits, 
in opposition to the Baal of the Druids. 

"The connection of Druidism with the name of 
Baal is well known. Ausonius, himself a Druid, 
says ' Tu Baiocassis stirpe Druidum satus 

* Cluver. Introd. Lond. 1711, p. 250, not. w. 
f Joseph us against Appian, I. 1. c. 3, and c, 14. 


*. Beleni sacratum ducis e Templo genus.'* A 
Gallic inscription published by Gruter, mentions 
Fons Beleni, the fountain of Baal.f There was 
also a sacred fountain in the Phoenician temple of 
Gadeira.t Facciolati notices the sacred fountains 
of Baal in his Dictionary, voce Belenus. The 
Fountain of the Sun, in the temple of Jupiter 
Ammon, owes its origin to the same Phoanician 
Diwinity, for the Sun and Baal were one and 
the same, Eschylus and Priscian mention the 
miraculous fountain of Palicorus in Sicily, add- 
ing, that perjurers were struck blind if they drank 
of its waters, H and Diodorus says, that this foun- 
tain and the oracle annexed to it, were of pri- 
maeval antiquity.^f Travelling westward, Solinus 

* Auson. Varior. Amsteled, 1671, p. 153 and 169, and 
notes 4 and 10. 

f Gruter. Inscr. n. 3, p. 37. 

There is a celebrated holy well, or Fons Beleni, at Baal, 
in the county Mayo, where pilgrimages are now made at 
certain seasons of the year, and one on Croagh Patrick, 
which was a holy mount before Christianity. W. B. 

Plin. Hist. 1. 2. c. 97. Polybius, and Strabo. 

Plin. 1. 5. Harduin's ed. p. 249, and Mela, a Spaniard, 
Varior. 1. 1, c. 8. p. 43. 

|| ^Eschylus apud Bochart Canaan, p. 588. 'Pandunt 
damnantque nefando perjures furto, quos tacto flumine 

f Diodor. 1. 2. Long before Diodorus Zenagoras men- 
tions it, as in Macrobius who quotes him. 

254 THE GAEL. 

describes oih^jf sacred wells possessed of the sanxe 
miraculous quality in. Sardinia, an island origi- 
nally inhabited by the Phoenicians, and Philostra- 
tus another at Tyancea.* 

" From these historical fragments it appears that 
the well-worshipping of the Irish Sceligs, inhabited 
by the Clan hua Bhascoine of Southern Ireland, 
was derived through their ancestors, the Vasqpns 
or Biscay ans of Iberia, from the Phoenician co- 
lonies who stretched along the coasts of Europe 
to Ireland, as expressly stated in the Annals of 
Phoenicia. J" The Scillies off Cape Belerium in 
Cornwall, and the Sceligs off Cape Bolus in 
Kerry, stand in the same track of Phoenician na- 
vigation with Cape Belerium, near Corunna in 
Spain. All these head-lands were consecrated to 
Baal. The ancients notice near Corunna a lofty 
Pharos, supposed to have been built by the Phoe- 
nician Hercules for the use of ships steering to 

* Philostr. in Vita Apollonii, 1. 1, c. 4. and Ammianus 
Marcel. 1. 23. ' Est circa Tyana aqua Jovi sacra.' 

f See the Phoenician Annals quoted in the the 3d century 
by Festus Avienus, who mentions, from Hanno's journal, the 
number of days' sail from Carthage to Ireland. Maittaire's 
Corpus Poetar. Veter. Avienus de Oris. 


or from the British Islands.* And Eochoid's 
Irish Bardic poems of the ninth century, which 
are still extant on vellum of above 600 years, 
state that the Scuit, or Scoti, proceeded from a port 
in Galicia, where was a tower named Tar- 
Breogan, the tower of the Brig-antes. These re- 
ferences to the sacred promontories of Baal are 
the more observable, when we consider, that the 
Itinerary of Antoninus mentions Tangier, a Phoe- 
nician town in Western Africa, which traded with 
Europe by the port of Baal in Boetica, and that 
Strabo and Pliny agree.i " 

* Compare the ancient history of Corunna with Salmon's 
Geogr. Lond. ed. 1766. Map of Spain. ^Ethicus says that 
this tower was built ad Speculum Britannia. Gough de- 
clares that he knows not what to make of this passage ! 

f Tingis abest a Bellone, Baeticas urbe, unde commeant 
ssepe Mercatores, xxx millia passuum. Plin. 1. 5, c. 1. Strabo, 
1. 3. I must refer once more to my Dissertation on the re- 
ligion of Pagan Ireland. 

The Skerries rocks of the north- west point of Anglesey 
and the Skerries on the coast of the county of Dublin, are 
probably a corruption of the Sceligs. W. B. 




< c 



GILDAS was the last writer of the Roman pe- 
riod of British history. Of the events which 
occurred on the invasion of the Roman province, 
by the Picts and Scots, we know very little, in- 
deed scarcely any thing but the fact of their in- 
roads. Gildas only hints at them ; his work was 
intended to be moral and religious, rather than his- 
torical, but it is valuable as the only contempo- 
rary authority, on which we can depend. There 
is in him so much internal evidence of veracity, 
and his work is so much a picture of truth, that 
it carries conviction with it. He was a pious 
and excellent Christian, who lamented the mi- 
series and horrors with which his country was 
afflicted, and attributed them to their true cause, 
the absence of religious and moral virtue, which 
has in every age, and in every country, rendered 
men cowardly, cruel, and contemptible, and will 
ever have that effect. An entire translation of 

258 THE GAEL. 

the book would now have very little interest, 
but that part which is historical, clearly shows 
the character and feeling of Britons at the fall 
of the Roman province under the Pictish and 
Saxon dominion. 

Polydore Virgil supposes Gil das to have lived 
about A. D. 580, in the pontificate of Pelagius 
II. Other accounts say he was born, A. D. 507, 
but there is no certainty of the accuracy of these 
opinions ; he may, and probably did flourish 
much nearer the period his writings refer to, for 
he speaks of the British kings, as a contemporary 

He was called the wise, and has ever been con- 
sidered a respectable and veritable writer. His 
style is querulous, involved, and somewhat 
pedantic, but of that polished prolixity upon 
which the Britons are said to have piqued them- 
selves. In the following translation is omitted 
most of the pedantic apostrophes in which he de- 
lighted to indulge, but the style of his Latin, 
has been rendered as literally as possible. The 
greater part of his work consists of moral and 
religious reflections and quotations of Holy Writ 
from the Septuagint version. 


Leland quotes the following passage from a 
life of Gildas, by an old anonymous author : 

" Gildas preached every Sunday at a church 
on the sea, in the region of Pebideauc, to an in- 
numerable multitude of auditors, in the time of 
king Trefunus. 

" Gildas was always desirous to submit to the 
authority of Arthur, but his brethren, the priests, 
resisted the authority of that king, being un- 
willing to be under his dominion. Howell, his 
eldest son, an active warrior, and most famous 
soldier, had not submitted to any king, not even 
to Arthur. 

" At the end of a year, the holy abbot Cadoc, 
and the excellent and learned doctor Gildas, with 
their scholars, retired, from their school, to two 
islands, JRonneth and Echin. Cadoc choosing 
that nearest Wales, Gildas, that adjoining Eng- 
land, but pirates came and annoyed him, and he 
left his island in a little ship, in the summer sea- 
son, and entered Glasgow* in great grief. Melua 

* It would appear that Glasgow (or Alcluyd, which was 
probably the city alluded to,) was one of the last holds of 

260 THE GAEL. 

being at that time king. The city was afterwards 
besieged by king Arthur, with a great army, 
because that wicked king (Melua) had ravished 
and violated Guennamar, Arthur's wife, and 
carried her to Glasgow for safety, on account of 
the strength of the place, it being surrounded by a 
river and marshes* overgrown with reeds."t 

the Roman Britons, being a very strong place, and capable 
of supply from the sea. Every little commander became the 
prince of the district he could controul, on the breaking up 
of the general Roman government of Britain. 

* Lelandi Collectanea, Vol. II. p. 368. Leland adds the 
following note, " Gildas vero prcedicabat in civitati Ardmaca" 
but gives no authority. 

f "Ex libellulo quedam de vitae Gildae auctore veteri. 
Preedicabit omni dominica die apud maritimam ecclesiam 
quae stat in Pebidiauc regione, in tempore Trifuni regis in- 
numerabili multitudine illo audiente, 

" Gildas Arturio semper cupiebat obedire. Confratres 
tamen ejus regi rebellabant prsedicto nolentes pati dominum. 
Hueil major natu belliger assiduus, et miles famosissimus, 
nulli regi obedivit, nee ipsi Arturio. 

" Finite anni spatio, et scholaribus recedentibus a studio 
S. abbas Cadocus et Gildas, doctor optimus, adierunt duas 
insulas scilicet Ronneth et Echin. Cadocus intravit proxi- 
miorum Gualliae, Gildas adjacentam Anglias. 

" Venerunt piratse, qui adflixerunt ilium. 

" Reliquit insulam, ascendit naviculam, et ingressus est 
Glasconiam cum magno dolore.Meluarege regnante, in aestiva 
regione. Obsessa est, itaque ab Arturio rege cumi nfinita mul- 


It is obvious from this account, if it can be 
depended on, that Arthur was not a Roman Bri- 
ton, but an invading 1 Pictish king, otherwise Gil- 
das and his brethren, the British clergy, would 
have had no hesitation in submitting to his 
authority ; which, it appears, Gildas was anxious 
to do, but the others refused ; and on his success- 
ful invasion of the district they inhabited, they 
chose rather to leave their monastery, or school, 
than be under hi' dominion. Gildas finding 
the island he had chosen for an asylum, sub- 
ject to the inroads and vexations of outlaws, 
who always take advantage of the weakness and 
confusion consequent upon the breaking up of 
established governments, was glad to avail him- 
self of the asylum of the, perhaps, then only 
Roman British city w 7 hich held out against the 
Picts, and went to Glasgow (or Alcluyd,) which, 
however, soon after submitting to Arthur, the 
Roman British power was annihilated, that is 
of those princes who rose into authority after 
the Romans left the country. 

Gildas was a priest of the British church, which 

titudine, propter Guenimmar uxorem suam violatam et rap- 
tarn a praedicto iniquo rege, et ibi ductam, propter refugium 
inviolati loci, propter munitiones arundineti, ac fluminis et 
paludis, causa tutela." 


being in communion with that of Ireland, 
very probably did preach at Armagh, having 
sought a refuge from the miseries consequent 
on the political convulsion and conquest of his 
country by the Picts and Saxons. 

" Britain," says Gildas, " is an island, situated 
almost in the extreme limit of the globe, in the 
direction of the west -(the divine balance that 
weighed out the whole earth^eing poised, so that 
the axis descended too much from the north,) is 
800 miles in length, and 200 in width, except the 
broader tracts of various promontories, which are 
surrounded by the curved limits of the ocean, by 
whose diffusion, if I may so speak, it is secured 
and fortified by an intransmeable circle on all sides ; 
and by the strait of the southern hemisphere, by 
which they sail to Belgic Gaul ; by the mouth of 
two noble rivers, the Thames and Severn, de- 
fended, as it were, by arms ; and of other smaller 
rivers, and twice ten states, and twice four, and 
not a few castles, with fortified walls and houses ; 
(whose tops, in menacing elevation, were con- 
structed on heights, with firm materials and con- 
nexion,) and also beautified 'with plains, spread 
to a vast extent, and sloping hills, lying in the 
arms of lovely scenes, adapted to luxuriant cul- 
tivation, and mountains, most convenient for the 
change of the pasture of cattle. 

C5ILDAS. 263 

u She (the island) with head erect, and spirit 
elevated, from the time she was inhabited, rises 
now ungrateful to the Deity, at other times to 
the citizens, often also to the transmarine kings 
and powers* 

" I will be silent about the olden days of ruth- 
less tyrants, who in other distant climes have 
been distinguished. Porphyry, that dog of the 
East, rabid against the church, to his madness 
and impudent style of expression, added this say- 
ing, * Britain is a province fruitful in tyrants.' 

" I will attempt to 8 describe those evils only 
which in the days of the Roman emperors, she 
both suffered and inflicted on other states, as 
much as is in my reach ; not so much from her 
own annals and histories (which, if they ever had 
being, cannot now be found, having been con- 
sumed in the general conflagrations of the enemy , 
or carried far away in the ships of exiled citizens) 
as from the accounts of those who traded to the 
country, which are indeed interrupted by frequent 
gaps, and cannot be sufficiently distinct. Sailing 
across, the emperor gave laws to the submis- 
sive island, and brought into subjection to his 
edicts, a people no less faithless than weak, not so 
much by fire, sword, and warlike engines, as hap- 


pens to other nations, as by mere threats and 
blows upon the face from the hands of the judges, 
whilst they repressed their indignation within 
their breasts, and offered entire obedience to him. 
On whose return to Rome, by reason, as was re- 
ported, of a deficiency in the military pay, and 
suspecting anything but rebellion, the insidious 
lioness (Boadicea,) butchered those who were 
left governors to proclaim rather than enforce the 
object of the Roman kingdom. When this oc- 
currence was told to the senate, and they had with 
great speed hastened an army to be revenged on 
those treacherous young wolves ; not a military 
fleet (prepared to fight heroically for their coun- 
try,) not a regularly formed battalion, nor a right 
wing, nor other warlike preparations are to be 
observed on the coasts, but backs, instead of shields, 
are presented to the pursuers, and like women, 
they stretch out necks (whilst cold tremor per- 
vades their bones) to the sword, and their hands 
to be chained ; so that every where it is said, as 
it were in proverb and reproach ' The Britons 
are neither brave in war nor faithful in peace.' 
Wherefore the Romans, many of those perfidious 
people having been slain some sold as slaves 
(that the land might not be utterly reduced to a 
desert,) having left the country as it was, destitute 
of wine and oil, seeking Italy, leaving some who 


were to command, a lash on the backs and a yoke 
on the necks of the natives, to take the homage 
of slaves by the mere Roman name, and lacerate 
the artful nation, not so much by military force 
as by the whip ; and, if the circumstance require 
it, to adapt the sword to his side, as the saying 
is ' vagina vacuum.' So much so that the is- 
land was not looked upon to be Britain, but a 
Roman province, and even what money they 
had, either of brass, silver, or gold, was stamped 
with the image of Ceesar. 

" Which things, though they were rather coldly 
received by the inhabitants, yet by some with 
quick, and others with less feeling, until the perse- 
cution of Dioclesian, the tyrant, which lasted nine 
years ; in which the churches throughout the 
world suffered oppression, and the Sacred Writ- 
ings, wherever they were found, burned in the 
streets, and the chosen ministers of the flock of 
Christ, butchered like the innocent sheep, so 
that (if it could be possible) not even* a remnant 
of the Christian faith remained in any province. 

"Wherefore, at length, the tyrant's severity 
becoming more violent, and already breaking forth 
to the desert wood ; the island having the Roman 
name, but not its habits or institutions, on the 

(56 THE GAEL. 

contrary, rejecting' them, sent the best of its most 
bitter produce to Gaul a numerous host of satel- 
lites accompanying Maximius, arrayed with en- 
signs of state, which he neither bore with dignity 
nor legally assumed, but by the law of tyrants. 

"He, with artifice rather than Valour, united 
to his lawless kingdom by snares of perjury 
and falsehood, contrary to the Roman system, 
some of the neighbouring towns or provinces, and 
stretched one of his wings towards Spain, and 
the other towards Italy, fixed the seat of his in- 
iquitous government among the Treviri, raged 
with ungoverned fury against the state, that he 
might expel the two legitimate commanders, one 
from Rome, the other from a most exemplary life. 

" Then Britain, reft of an armed force, the 
necessaries of war, commanders, and a large 
body of youth, (who accompanied the abovemen- 
tioned tyrant, and never after returned) uncouth 
and ignorant of the various modes of war, (galled 
in the first instance by two foreign nations, both 
exceeding savage, that of the Scots from the west, 
and the Picts from the north), was powerless and 
in groans for many a year. On account of whose 
depredation and direful oppression she sent am- 
bassadors to Rome with letters, and with mourn- 

GILDAS. 267 

fill supplication desiring a military force to protect 
her, and swearing, in good faith, subjection to the 
Roman empire, (if the enemy should be driven to 
a distance.) To whom a legion was forthwith de- 
spatched, mindful of previous misfortune, and suffi- 
ciently furnished with arms ; which, brought in ships 
over the ocean to our country, engaged hand 
in hand with the enemy, and killing a great 
number of their force, expelled all from her 
boundaries, and liberated the subjugated people 
from impending captivity, by a decisive over- 
throw. Then commanded them to erect a wall 
between the two seas, that it might, when furnish- 
ed with a crowd of defenders, be a terror to the 
defeated enemy, and a protection to the people ; 
which, reared not so much with stones as sods, 
by the ignorant common people, without a guide, 
was of no service. But, when the legion was re- 
turning home in great triumph and joy, the former 
enemies, like devouring wolves, excited by exces- 
sive hunger, with parched jaws, bounding around 
the sheepfold, the shepherd not being at hand, 
borne along by winged oars and lusty rowers, and 
sails inflated by the winds, break through the 
boundaries, commit slaughter in every direction, 
mow down, trample, and run over every thing be- 
fore them that was mature or in a state of growth ; 
wherefore again suppliant ambassadors were sent 

268 THE GAEL, 

with torn robes and head covered (with a mourn- 
ing hood) beseeching assistance from the Romans ; 
and, as timid young, crouching under the faithful 
wings of their mother, that their miserable coun- 
try might not be annihilated, or tlie Roman name 
which struck only in sound upon their ears, to be 
lessened by the contempt of foreign nations. 
And they, as much as is possible for human nature, 
excited by the relation of such a tragedy, winged 
like eagles, and quickened the speed of their ca- 
valry over the land, and their sailors over the sea: 
at first unexpected, but soon a source of terror, 
pierced their swords into the necks of the enemy, 
and made slaughter among them like to the fall of 
leaves in autumn ; and as the mountain torrent, 
swollen by the many streams of the tempest, and 
in its sonorous course o'erflowing its channels, 
overturned by one mighty rush the edifices before 
it, so our illustrious allies quickly drove the 
swarms of our enemies beyond the seas, (if. any 
could escape), because they had hitherto 
greedily carried an annual booty over the 
sea, there being none to oppose them. Then 
the Romans declared to the British provin- 
cials that they could not thus often be distressed 
by such laborious expeditions, and suffer the 
Roman standard and their armies to be occupied 
by land and sea in repulsing and chastising cow- 

GILD AS. 269 

ardly and wandering robbers ; but advised them, 
by inuring themselves to arms, and a manly me- 
thod of fighting with all their strength, 
to vindicate themselves, their country, their sub- 
stance, their wives, their children, and, what is 
still greater than these, their liberty and life ; and 
that they should not stretch out their hands, not 
only unarmed, but ready to be chained, to nations 
not more powerful than themselves, (unless they 
were weakened by sloth and inactivity), but that, 
arrayed with shields, swords, and spears, and ready 
for the contest, they should forthwith build a wall 
(not like the other, but a substantial one of stone) 
at the public expense, .calling all inhabi- 
tants to join in the common cause and to as- 
sist in building from sea to sea not between 
cities which had been built there in an accidental 
or scattered manner. They thus delivered pre- 
cepts of courage to the timorous people, and left 
models for the formation of weapons, and built 
towers, at short distances from each other, to com- 
mand from sea to the shore of the ocean to wards the 
south, where their ships were harboured, and then 
bid them farewell, never more to return. 

" Whereupon, suddenly, emerged from their re- 
treats, numerous and savage flocks of Picts and 
Scots, in the vehicles in which they were carried 

270 THE GAEL. 

across the Stygian valley, (like tawny swarms of 
vermin from the confined cavity of their holes 
under the meridian Titan and scorching heat,) 
and, according to their habits, often quarrelling 
among themselves unanimous only in the desire 
of rapine and shedding blood covering their 
fierce countenances with more hair than their 
shameful parts, and those parts contiguous, with 
garments. Being opposed* more boldly than 
usual, they took possession only of all the 
north and extreme part of the country as far as 
the wall, and expelled the natives. To oppose 
these encroachments a feeble force was drawn 
out on the heights of their defences, unsuited and 
ill-disposed by reason of their cowardly hearts, 
which, by inactive service, had become enervated. 
Meanwhile the exertions of these vagabonds 
were unceasing, and, with hooked weapons, the 
unhappy citizens were dragged off the wall and 
instantly immolated. This infliction of sudden 
death was really a benefit, because those, thus 
destroyed, avoided, by their sudden exit, the hor- 
rible impending tortures suffered by their surviv- 
ing brethren and children. 

" Having deserted their cities and the lofty 
wall, greater evils awaited the survivors even 
defeat, slaughter, flight, dispersion, and more 

GILDAS. 271 

than usually desperate pursuit by the enemy, and a 
massacre more cruel' than ever. And as lambs 
are torn by wolves, so the wretched inha- 
bitants were destroyed by their enemies ; inso- 
much that their habitation may be likened to that 
of savage beasts. To obtain the supplies of a 
short existence, and procure food, the mise- 
rable citizens did not refrain from pillaging 
one another ; and thus the external slaughter 
was encreased by domestic strife. By this in- 
cessant pillaging, the whole country was deprived 
of a supply of food, except from precarious 
hunting. Whereupon the wretched survivors, 
sending letters to ^Etius, a man of consular 
dignity, spoke in this strain ' To .ZEtius the 
consul the groans of the Britons.' And after 
'a few complaints they say ' The barbarians 
drive us to the sea, the sea drives us back to the 
barbarians. Thus two kinds of death await 
us we are either butchered or drowned, nor 
have we any power to oppose them' 

" Meanwhile a direful famine seized on those 
wandering and wretched beings, which compelled 
many of them to yield themselves to these bloody 
robbers, in order to receive a little nourishment 
for the support of life. 

" At length, for the first time, trusting not in 


man, but in God, they took courage, attacked 
and made havoc of the enemies, who had preyed 
upon them so many years. The boldness of the 
invaders was thus repressed for a time, but 
not the vile propensities of our countrymen 
the enemy had receded from the citizens, but 
not the citizens from their crimes. For the habits of 
the people were, even as at this time, to be weak 
in repelling the weapons of their enemies, but 
brave in civil feuds, and in enduring the burthen 
of guilty men. Weak, I say, in following the 
standard of peace and truth, but resolute in the 
commission of wickedness and falsehood. There- 
fore, these bold assailants-, the Hibernians, went 
home but to make their way back again at no 

distant period. 


" The Picts, also, for the first time, remained 
in the remote part of the island, but occasionally 
making inroads and driving away spoil. 

" In this time a direful wound, famine, was in- 
flicted on the destitute people, another more 
violent one silently sprouting out ; but the deso- 
lation ceasing, the island overflowed with such 
plenty, that no age had ever witnessed but with 
all which luxury encreased. It germinated with 
a powerful shoot, in as much that it might justly 

GILD AS. 273 

be said of that time, * never was such fornication 
heard of among the nations.' And not this 
vice alone, but all others to which human na- 
ture is prone. Kings were anointed, not by 
Almighty God, but put up by those who stood 
forward as more cruel than the rest ; after a 
while they were butchered by those who created 
them, without examining the truth of the matter. 
In the meanwhile, by the will of God, he com- 
menced to purify his family ; but they, only on the 
intelligence of affliction, began to amend, who 
were stained so deeply with their sins, for the 
winged flight of rumour penetrates the listening 
ears of all. 

" The enemies again approached, determined 
entirely to destroy the Britons, and possess and 
occupy the country themselves, from one end to 
the other. Nevertheless, though they did not 
succeed at that time, yet a direful pestilence 
fiercely attacked these foolish people, which de- 
stroyed so great a number, that the living could 
scarcely bury the dead. 

" A counsel was then held, to consider what 
would be the most effectual means of repel- 
ling the terrific and repeated irruptions and 
plunderings of the afore-named nations, the 


Picts and Scots. The council, with their haughty 
tyrant, Vortigern, were puzzled, but, at length, they 
found a guard, or rather destruction of the country ; 
the nefarious Saxons, of detestable name, hated 
alike by God and man, were invited and admitted, 
as wolves to a sheepfold, into the island, for the 
purpose of checking the northern nations ; than 
which nothing could be more bitter or pernicious 
in its effect. Thus a band of devils, breaking 
forth from the den of the barbarian lioness, in 
three cyulis,* as they were called in their lan- 
guage, in ours, long ships, with prosperous sail, 
omens, and auguries, (in which it was declared 
by the prophets, to them, with certain foresight, 
that they would govern the country for three 
hundred years, but that for one hundred and fifty, 
that is half the time, would repeatedly lay it 
waste.) Thrown at first on the eastern part of 
the island, under the command of the inauspi- 
cious tyrant, fixed their terrific talons, as if about 
to defend the country, but most assuredly to 
fight against it. To which the above named pre- 

* Keels, long ships. " Tribus (ut lingua ejus exprimitur) 
cyulis, nostra lingua, longis navibus." Such long vessels as 
are used in the Danube, and are called zeilin, from their 
length. In all Germany, zeile means length, not breadth. 
Leibnitz, Scriptor. Brunivicen. fol. 31, not. 8. 

GILD AS. 275 

cursor, (finding success to have accompanied the 
first band,) sends a more numerous company 
of satellites and dogs, which, being carried on 
rafts, is united to the base mercenaries. The 
barbarians being thus introduced into the island, 
as soldiers, ready to undergo extreme hardships 
(as they feigned) for their gracious inviters and 
hosts, required provisions to be given to them, 
which, being allotted, for a long time, stop- 
ped the mouths of the dogs. They also, but 
not immediately, sought to have monthly tributes 
allowed them, carefully colouring the occasion, 
and declared unless they were more profusely sup- 
plied, the Britons having broken the treaty, they 
would depopulate the entire island. Nor was 
there much delay before they followed their threats 
with execution. For retribution and judgment 
for preceding crimes, was called for from sea to 
sea. The flame from the east was increased, by 
their sacrilegious hands, laying waste all the 
neighbouring cities and lands ; and, being once 
kindled, did not rest until, by burning almost 
the whole superficies of the island, it swept over 
to the western ocean, with a red and greedy 
flame ; so that all the colony, as if with repeated 
battering rams and all the colonists and the 
heads of the church together with the priests 
and people were destroyed by swords shining 

276 THE GAEL. 

on every side, and crackling flames, most miser- 
able to be seen, in the very midst of the streets, 
the defences' being torn away. The stones 
of towering walls, sacred altars, limbs of the 
dead, covered with a crust of purple gore, might 
be seen jumbled up together, as in some horrid 
pressing machine. There was no sepulture of 
any kind, except the ruins of houses, and the 
bowels of beasts and birds of prey, or any reve- 
rence for sacred souls, even if any were found 
at that time worthy to be carried to the heights 
of heaven by holy angels. 

" Some of the wretched survivors taken on 
the mountains were butchered in heaps ; others, 
overcome with hunger, came and gave themselves 
into the hands of the enemy to be slaves for ever, 
(if, indeed, they were not forthwith butchered, 
which was preferable, and be worthy of deep- 
felt gratitude.) Some sought foreign shores, with 
a terrific lamentation ; others flying to mountains, 
threatening and rugged in their aspect, to 
forests, with deep vallies, and to rocks over- 
hanging the sea, ventured their lives, always 
with apprehension and continual fear, by still re- 
maining in their country. At length, a consider- 
able time having intervened and those cruel 
freebooters returned to their home, the remaining 

GILDAS. #77 

citizens, strengthened by God, (to whom thdir 
miserable countrymen united themselves from 
different places armed, eagerly as bees to their 
hives when a storm is impending), and at the 
same time praying with earnestness (and, as it is 
said, " loading the air with unnumbered pray- 
ers") that they might not be utterly annihilated. 
" Under the generalship of Ambrosius Aureli- 
anus, a prudent man, (who, robed in purple, per- 
haps was the only man of the Roman nation in 
that time of collision that escaped his parents 
being destroyed in the same, whose offspring now 
in our times have far degenerated from their 
generou^ ancestor), they took fresh courage, and, 
provoking their conquerors to battle, victory 
the Lord having granted it fell to them accord- 
ing to their prayers. After this, at one time the 
citizens, at another the enemy conquered, that 
the Lord might try, in his accustomed man- 
ner, whether Israel loved him or not, till the 

year of the battle of the Badonic mountain, 
the place of my nativity, a slaughter of those 
robbers took place, which was almost the last, 
but not the least. The cities of my country are 
not, as formerly, inhabited, but deserted and in 
ruins : they present at this day a pitiable appear- 
ance, although external, but not internal wars 
have ceased. For that rfrevitable ruin of the 

278 THE GAEL. 

island, and the mention of the assistance, so unex- 
pected in the memory of those who still survive 
as witnesses of both miracles, for by the exertion 
of this king*, public and private individuals, priests 
and ecclesiastics have each preserved their rank. 
But these having departed, when another age 
succeeded they were ignorant of the former time, 
and did not sufficiently experience the temporary 
serenity. Thus all the standards of truth and 
justice were broken and upturned, so that not 
even, I may say, a trace or memorial of them ap- 
peared in the above-mentioned classes, except in 
a few, and very few, by reason of the loss of 
so great a multitude, daily fell heading into 
Tartarus, so small a number were left that the 
venerable Mother Church, in a manner, had not 
left those, reclining in her bosom, whom she 
could truly esteem as true sons. For why should 
we conceal that which all the nations around not 
only know but reprehend ? 

" Britain had kings, 'tis true, but they were 
tyrants ; she had judges, but they were corrupt ; 
after preying upon and oppressing the innocent, 
and at the same time protecting and supporting 
the suspected, the vile, and the robbers, who had 
not only many wives, but mistresses of whose 
enormities that tyranlf Constantine, the whelp of 

GILDAS. 279 

that filthy lioness, Damnonia, was guilty who, 
in this year, after the solemnity of an dkth, by 
which he bound himself never to act treacherously 
to the people, (at first swearing by God, and then 
by the attendant choir of saints, and by the 
mother) in the venerable bosom of both mothers 
and of the visible church under the holy abbot 
Amphibalus, cruelly tore the tender sides of the 
royal boys, and even the hearts of their two nurses, 
between the very altars themselves ; as I have 
said, with the execrable sword and spear, in the 
place of teeth ; whose hands were never stretched 
to arms, (which no braver at this time ever bore) 
but only to God and to the altar. In the day of 
judgment they will suspend the venerable banner 
of their patience and faith on the portals of thy 
city, oh Christ ! And this he did, not only to be 
lauded, but as if it were a merit on his part. For 
having put away his lawful wife, contrary to the 
precepts of his master, Christ, and the prohibition 
of nations, he lived for many years in continued 
and varied adulteries. 

" Why do you also, like to a leopard jn morals 
and discoloured by iniquity, with hoary head, 
sitting on a throne supported by treachery, co- 
vered from head to foot with parricides, and de- 
based by adultery, in vain the son of a good king, 

280 THE GAEL. 

( Vortiporius,* tyrant of Dimetae) raise thyself, 
as Manasses of Ezechia why art thou insensibly 
erect? Why do not those violent draughts of sin, 
which you suck in like the best wine or rather 
in which you have been enveloped why do not 
these satisfy you, even now sensibly approaching 
the limits of life why do you, as if aspiring to 
the pinnacle of iniquity, load your already miser- 
able life with an intolerable burden, by the re- 
moval of your wife, and the death of her unchaste 
daughter ? 

" Why have you turned yourself, in the old day 
of your iniquity, a despiser of God and debaser 
of his appointment, oh ! Cuneglasse /j- (in the 
Roman language lion -coloured butcherf) 
Wherefore do you create such a contest as well 
with men as God ? Eminent, indeed, among 
your fellow-citizens in arms to God infinite in 
wickedness wherefore have you, besides other 
innumerable wickednesses, your own wife being 
divorced, widowed your own near relative, who 
promised eternal chastity to God, as the poets say, 

* pop teoic pO/i, chief of your race. This was an 
epithet applied to Vortigern, and tyrant, was tJ<X/in<X, or 
lord. Lord of the Dimetae, being a Latinizing of that word. 
f Thou hoary wicked hound. f Lanio Fulve. 


like the great tenderness of celestial nymphs (with 
all veneration, or rather dullness of soul), con- 
trary to the prohibition of the Apostle, declaring 
that adulterers could not dwell in the heavenly 
kingdom ? 

" Wherefore, thou dragon of the Island, having 
expelled many from the kingdom as well as 
life as we have lately expressed it in our style 
first in wickedness, powerful beyond others, but 
also in iniquity profuse in largesses, still more 
so in crimes brave in arms, but still more reso- 
lute in destruction oh maglocunef* wherefore 
participate in that ancient wickedness, as if you 
were drunken with wine pressed out of the vine 
of Sodom ? Wherefore get together, of your own 
desire, such an unavoidable heap of sins, like lofty 
mountains, upon your royal neck ? 

" Did you not bitterly oppress, in your very 
earliest years, with sword, spear, and fire, your 
uncle, the king, with fierce soldiers (whose coun- 
tenance in the ranks were not unlike the whelps 
of a lion) ? Did you not, after the violent desire 

, s on; loc^dark; cuJne, hound, or dog ; an 
opprobrious name given by Gildas to Vortigern, viz. " dark 
or wicked, son of a hound." 


for empire had ceased, carried on by the wish to 
return to the true way, determine night and day 
(your conscience cutting you on account of your 
sins) to become a monk, at first ruminating many 
things, as it were, under your teeth, then sub- 
mitting them to the multitude ; and this you 
have vowed without, as you said, any kind of 

" Oh, how much joy would it be to the mother 
church, (if you, an enemy of all human kind, 
had not been painfully separated from her 
bosom I) as much of joy and pleasure as was 
your conversion to the good fruit, as well in heaven 
as earth, so much now your turning to the evil, 
like the sick dog to his vomit, is a matter of 
grief and mourning. 

* ' The first and legal marriage of your wife 
(after you broke your monastic vow) is made 
illicit, and the wife of another living man, and 
that not of a stranger, but of a nephew, is be- 
loved. Oh, how that tough neck, laden with so 
many crimes with a two-fold paricidal murder, 
by killing, as we have said above, your wife, who 
lived with you for some time is bent, by the 
towering weight of sacrilege, from the low to 
the lowest. 

GILDAS. 283 

** Then she, by whose suggestion so many cala- 
mities and crimes were perpetrated, (as the tongues 
of thy flatterers exclaim, from their lips, but not 
from their hearts,) being widowed from her legi- 
timate bed, you connected yourself with a most 
incestuous marriage. 

" When the king is known to be unjust, all 
under him are wicked. A just king, as the pro- 
phet says, reanimates a nation. But good coun- 
sels are not wanting, since you have so accom- 
plished a master the preceptor of the whole of 

The foregoing is the substance of the histori- 
cal matter in Gildas ; it is very interesting on 
account of its early date, but it affords but little 
information of facts. It, however, fully esta- 
blishes that the language of the Britons was 

His own name is itself Gaelic, and means the 
handsome or pretty pledge, gtoll, a pledge ; 
bea^, pretty. A name likely to be given to a 
fine or good looking child. 

Cadoc, also, the name of the other British 
doctor, mentioned in the life of Gildas, quoted 

284 THE GAEL. 

in page 259? is a Gaelic name. c<xb<xc, 
friendship. Thus does every word, and every 
name, accidentally mentioned by each antient 
writer of credit, assist in establishing- the fact, 
that the language spoken by the Britons was 
Gaelic. Although that fact appears sufficiently 
established by the evidence already produced, yet 
it is so great a novelty, that it requires to be irre- 
fragably established ; and, therefore, the support 
and weight of every writer may fairly be brought 


NENNIUS is said to have been abbot of Ban- 
gor, and to have flourished about the year 620. 
The only Latin editions I am aware of, are that 
published in Gale's xv. Scriptores, (Oxford, 1691,) 
and that published by C. Bertram, at Copen- 
hagen, 1757. No English translation, I believe, 
is extant. 

Leland speaks of Nennius, as a writer of credit, 
in his " Assertio Arturi. "* The preface of 
Nennius, published by Gale, says : 

" I drew the greater part of my information 
from traditions, a part from writings, and the mo- 
numents of the old British inhabitants ; a part 
from the annals of the Romans, and also from 

* LeU Col. Ap. 1. 20. 

286 THE GAEL. 

the chronicles of the holy Fathers, viz. Jerome, 
Prosper, Eusebius, and the history of the Scots 
and Saxons, although they were enemies ; not 
as I wished, but as I could, submitting to the au- 
thorities of my seniors, I have, clumsily indeed, 
collected together this little history, as the glean- 
ing of the ears of a more perfect harvest ; and 
endeavoured to preserve it for posterity, lest that 
should be trodden down entirely, arid alto- 
gether lost, which still remained, notwithstanding 
the incursions of foreigners into our country."* 

This preface, however, is wanting in the copy 

* " Vestrse sit notum charitate, quod cum rudis eram ingenio 
et idiota, sermone haec pro modulo meo,non propriaenitens sci- 
entiae, quae vel nulla, vel admodum rara et exilis est, Latino- 
rum auribus idiomatizando tradere praesumpsi : sed partim 
majorum traditionibus, partim scriptis, partim etiam monu- 
mentis veterum Britanniae incolarum, partim et de annalibus 
Romanoruni ; insuper, et de chronicis sanctorum Patrum, 
scilicet Jeronymi, Prosperi, Eusebii ; necnon et de historiis 
Scotorum, Saxonumque, licet inimicorum, non ut volui sed 
ut potui, meorum obtemperans.jussionibus seniorum, unam 
hanc histioriunculam undecunque collectam balbutiendo 
coacervavi : et remanentes spicas actuum prseteritorum, ne 
penitus calcatae deperirent, quarum ampla seges quondam 
extranearum gentium infestis messoribus sparsim prserepta 
est, posterorum memoriae pudibimdus mandare curavi." 


of Nennius in Bennett's College Cambridge, and 
also in most others, and, therefore, is not sup- 
posed to have been written by Nennius. Mr. 
Burton Conyngham, in his copy of Gale, now 
in the library of the Royal Dublin Society, has 
inserted this note : " Haec enim praefatio nullo 
modo a Nennio compone possit utpote scripta, 
A. D. 858 si numerus anni juste ponatur, et ipse 
Nennius, ut omnes consentiunt, A. D. 620, flo- 
ruerit." A criticism equally applicable to a great 
part of the work itself. 

The first article, however, called the Apology 
of Nennius, the Britain, and Historian of the 
British People, which was probably his produc- 
tion, is as follows : 

" I, Nennius, the disciple of S. Elbod, have 
undertaken to write certain extracts respecting 
the state of the British people, l^ltause the 
learned of the island of Briton possessed no 
skill, or had any record thereof in their books. 
But I have accumulated and put down all that I 
could find, as well from the Roman annals, as 
from the writings of the Fathers, the Scots, and 
English, as also from our old traditions,, which 
many doctors and authors have been induced to 
write ; I know not whether they have left us 

288 THE GAEL. 

more accounts of the frequent occurrence of pesti- 
lence and mortality, or the horrible slaughter 
of war. I request that every one who reads 
this hook, will give me his courtesy, and make 
allowance for one who ventures, after so many 
more able authors, to write, rather as a talkative 
bird, than as a capable critic. I give way to him 
who knows more accurately the business than 

There are several MS. copies of Nennius ex- 
tant, two at Cambridge, and several in the British 
Museum, the greater number of which are at- 
tributed to Gildas. Many passages, are found in 
some copies which do not occur in the others. 
This is the work Polydore Vergil denounces as 
the pseudo Gildas, and cautions his readers from 
giving credit to. 

It is dlfient from the Apology and Preface, 
that Nennius collected, and inserted all the state- 
ments he could find, either written or traditional, 
without intending to vouch for their accuracy. 
Many of his chapters, respecting the origin of the 
Britons, are contradictory of each other, and few 
of them* entirely correct, but still they contain 
most valuable matter. 

I have inserted a brief digest of the sixty- 


five chapters, giving those more at large which 
supply information of interest. 


CAP. i. " First age from Adam to Noah. 

" Second age from Noah to Abraham. 

" Third age from Abraham to David. 

" Fourth age from David to Daniel. 

" Fifth age from Daniel to John the Baptist. 

" Sixth age from John the Baptist to the day 
of judgment, when our Lord Jesus Christ shall 
come to judge both the living and the dead by 

" From the beginning of the world to the de- 
luge, were 2242 years. 

"From the deluge to Abraham, were 1442 

" From Abraham to Moses, 640 years. 

" From Moses to David, 500 years. 

" From David to Nebuchodnezzar, 569 years. 

" From Adam to the carrying away to Babylon, 
are computed 4779 years. From the captivity 
at Babylon to Christ, 563 years. From Adam 
to our Lord Jesus Christ, 5200 years. From the 
passion of our Lord Jesus Christ, there are passed 
800 years ; but 832 years from the incarnation 



to the 30th year of the reign of Enaurath, king 
of Moniae, or Mon, who now governs the king- 
dom of Wenedocia, that is Guermet. There has, 
therefore, passed from the beginning of the world 
to the present year, 6108 years. 

CAP. ii. " The island of Britain, which is 
said to be so called from Brito, the son of Hisi- 
cio, who was the son of Alan, of the family of 
Japhet ; but according to others, from Brutus, a 
Roman consul, is 800 miles in length, and 200 
in breadth. It has 28 cities, and innumerable 
promontories, and castles. It is inhabited by four 
nations, Scots, Picts, Saxons, and Britons. There 
are three large islands in its neighbourhood, 
whereof one lies towards Armortca, and is called 
Withy which the Britons call Guied or Guith.* 

The second is in the middle of the sea between 

Britain and Ireland, called Eubonia y or Man. 

The third is at the extreme limit of the British 
World beyond the Picts, and is called Orcania. 
There are many rivers, particularly two, the 
Thames and Severn.t 

* Quam Britones insulam Guied, vel Guith, [vocant] quod 
Latine divortium dici potest ; g^Ot;, the sea, or the wind. 
f Tamesis et Sabrina. 


CAP. in and iv " Contain the story and 
descent of Brute from ^Eneas, and his settlement 
in Britain, to which island he gave his name. 
The ground work of Geoffery of Monmouth's 

CAP. v. " After an interval of not less than 
900 years, the Picts came and occupied the Or- 
cades, and eventually possessed themselves of the 
third part of Britain, which they at present pos- 

CAP. vi. " The Scots came from Spain to Hi- 
bernia. First came Bartholomeus with 1000 
people, as well men as women, and increased to 
4000, but a plague came upon them, and they 
all perished in one week. Afterwards came 
Nimech, who sailed about for a year and half, 
and then reached a port in Hibernia, and 
after remaining some years, returned again to 

CAP. vn. " After came three sons of a certain 
Spanish soldier, with thirty ships, (chiulis,) 
thirty women in each ship ; after remaining* there 
upwards of a year, they saw a tower of glass in 
the midst of the sea. And the men examined the 
tower, and sought l to speak to those in it, but no 


one answered them ; and then they with unanimous 
consent agreed to attack the tower, with all their 
ships and all their women, except one vessel which 
had been wrecked, in which were thirty men and 
as many women. And when they landed on the 
shore, where the tower was, the sea rose and 
drowned them all. Therefore from the thirty 
men and thirty women who belonged to the ship 
which had been wrecked, all Hibernia was peo- 
pled as at this day. 

CAP. vin. " A little after people came from 
Spain, and occupied many regions. First came 
Clamhoctor, and inhabited with all his people to 
this day. In Britain also, Historeth, the son of 
Istorinus, held Dalreida. Buile, also settled in the 
island of Eubonia, with his people. The sons 
of Vethan obtained the country of the Dimetse, 
and spread themselves in many places, until they 
were expelled from all Britain by Cuneda and 
his sons.* 

CAP. ix. " If any one desires to know for 
how long a time Hibernia was deserted and unin- 
habited, it was thus told me by the most learned 
of the Scots : 

* Kennedy, 


" ' When the children of Israel passed the Red 
Sea, and the Egyptians following them, were 
swallowed up, as is said in the Scriptures, there 
was a certain noble Scythian, with a great number 
of followers in Egypt, who had been expelled 
from his kingdom. He did not go to persecute 
the people of God. They also were expelled 
lest they should seize upon the kingdom of 
Egypt. For forty-two years they wandered in 
Africa, and passing by the sea to the Pillars 
of Hercules, sailed into the Tyrrhene sea, 
settled in Spain, and resided there many years 
and increased in power, and multiplied great- 
ly j and afterwards came to Hibernia, 1002 years 
after the drowning of the Egyptians in the Red 
Sea. They also came to Dalreida at the time 
Brutus governed the Romans, that is, when they 
took consuls, then tribunes of the people, then 

CAP. x. " The Britons came to Britain in the 
third age of the world, but the Scythse, .that is 
the Scots, in the fourth age, acquired Hibernia. 
But the Scythse, who inhabited the west, and the 
Picts of the north, constantly and with one accord 
fought against the Britons, because they were 
unused to arms. But after a long interval the 
Roman monarchy extended itself over the whole 

294 THE GAEL. 

CAP. xi. " From the first year that the Saxons 
came to Britain, to the fourth year of king Mer- 
vin, is computed at 429 years. From the na- 
tivity of our Lord Jesus Christ, to the advent of 
St. Patrick to Hibernia, there are enumerated 
437 years from the death of St. Patrick to that 
of St. Bridget, 60 years. From the nativity of 
Columkille, to the death of St. Bridget, four years. 
The beginning of the reckoning by cycles of 
19 years from the incarnation of our Lord Jesus 
Christ to the advent of St. Patrick to Hibernia, 
makes a full number of 457 years. From the ad- 
vent of St. Patrick to the said island, to the cycle 
of nineteen years, in which we now are, there 
have been 22 cycles, that is 421 years ; and there 
are three years in ogdoade to this year. 

CAP. xn. " Is a repetition 'from our old 
books,' of the descent of Brute from Noah. 

CAP. xin. " Is a nonsensical pedigree of 
Brito, Francus, Romanus, and ^4lemannus, which 
he says * inveni ex traditione veterum.' 

CHAPTERS xiv. to xxvi " Contain an ac- 
count of the conquest of Britain, by Caesar, and 
the reigns of the Emperors to Constantine, and 
the conversion of Lucius, the king of Britain, 
hy pope Evaristus. 


CAP. xxvn " Three times the Roman generals 
were slain by the Britons. But the latter being- 
much annoyed by the barbarians, that is the Scots 
and Picts, sought the assistance of the Romans, 
to whom they sent ambassadors in great grief, 
who entered the senate house with sand on their 
heads, and carried with them great presents to the 
consuls. They promised with an oath to submit 
to the Roman laws, although they were hard. 
The Romans came again with a large army to 
their assistance, and placed generals and com- 
manders in Britain, and they were under the im- 
perial rule, and had Roman generals and armies 
for 449 years. But the Britons, by reason of 
the burthen of the imperial rule, again rebelled, 
slew the Roman generals, but again petitioned 
for help. Then the Romans came and plundered 
the Britons of gold, silver, brass, and many 
sumptuous vests, and honey, and returned in 
great triumph to Rome. 

CAP. xxvui. " After the war and the death 
of the tyrant Maximin, Gorthigerri* reigned 
in Britain, and was greatly excited by fear of the 
Picts and Scots, and the vengeance of the Ro- 


529(3 THE GAEL. 

mans, as well as apprehensive from Ambrosius. 
In the mean time three (chiulce) ships arrived 
from Germany, in which were Horsa and Hengist, 
brothers, who had been driven into exile. Vor- 
tigern received them kindly, and gave them an 
island, which in their tongue is called Taneth, 
(Thanet,) but in British, Ruiihina,* in the 
reign of Martian the second. It was in the year 
447, after the passion of Christ, that Vortigern 
received the Saxons. 

CAP. xxix. " In his time, St. Germanus, bishop 
of the city of Antisiodore, came and preached 
the Gospel in Britain, and was distinguished by 
his great virtues ; many by him were taught the 
way of salvation, but many perished for defect of 
faith. Some miracles which were performed 
by God through him, I have determined to write. 

CAP. xxx to xxxiv Contain an account of 
these miracles. 

CAP. xxxv. " And it happened afterwards, 
that when the Saxons measured out their camps 
in the aforesaid island of Taneth, the king pro- 

* 3&ut<Xb, a foreland ; 1n1f, an island. Now called 
the Isle of Thanet, and the North Foreland. 

NENN1US. 297 

mised faithfully to supply them regularly with 
food and raiment, which pleased them, and they 
promised they would fight gallantly against his 
enemies. But these barbarians had increased to 
so great a number, that the Britons were unable, 
or unwilling, to feed them ; and when they de- 
manded food and raiment, as had been pro- 
mised, the Britons said * we are not able to give 
these supplies, because your numbers are so 
much increased, therefore leave us to ourselves, 
we do not want your assistance/ But they took 
council, and the majority were for breaking th 

CAP. xxxvi. " But Hengist, who was an able 
man, astute and determined, when he considered 
the inert and incapable king and people, who 
were unaccustomed to arms, he said to the 
British king, at the next meeting, we are but a 
few, and if you will send us to our country, we 
will invite a larger number of our soldiers, and 
bring them over to fight for you and your peo- 
ple. This the king agreed to. They imme- 
diately sent their messengers over the Scythian 
valley (or sea),* and soon returned with seven- 

* Mare. Literally the sea adjoining Scythia, which is 
now Scandinavia, Jutland, Denmark, and Norway. 

298 THE GAEL. 

teen ships,* and many chosen warriors in them. 
In one of the ships there came a very beautiful 
and comely girl, who was the daughter of Hen- 
gist. After their arrival, Hengist made a feast 
for King Vortigern, and his knights, and his 
interpreter, who was called Cerdicselmet. None 
of the Britons understood the Saxon tongue 
beside that Briton. Hengist commanded the 
girl to serve the wine and strong drink to the 
guests, who became perfectly inebriated. Thus 
drinking, Satan entered into the heart of Vorti- 
gpern, that he should become enamoured of the 
girl, and, by his interpreter, demanded her of 
her father, saying " I will give you any thing 
you demand, even to half my kingdom, if you 
consent to let me have your daughter in mar- 
riage. 9 Hengist took council with the elders, 
who came with him, from the island of Oghgul, 
what he should demand ; with one consent they 
said, demand the region which, in their tongue, 
is called Canthguaraland^ but, in our language, 

* Chiulis. 

f Cantir land. The Saxon added land to the British 
name Ceantir ; but tir, the last syllable, has the same mean- 
ing. This Saxon appellation shews clearly that Ceantir 
was the British name. 


Ghent* and he gave it them. Gnoirangona 
was then the king of Kent, who alone had the 
power to give away his rights, but it was un- 
known that his kingdom was delivered to the 
Pagans, so they gave the girl to the king in mar- 
riage, and he slept with her, and loved her very 

" CAP. xxxvu. " Then Hengist said to the 
king, I am your father, and will be a counsellor 
to you ; you should never neglect my advice, 
nor should you fear to be surpassed by any man, 
or any people, for my soldiers are strong, and 
may be depended on. I will, therefore, invite 
over my sons, and your brothers-in-law, who are 
brave, and will fight against the Scots, and do 
you give them the country in the north, adjoin- 
ing the rampart which is called the wall. And 
he commanded them to be invited, and Ochta 
and Abisa were sent for, with forty ships, who, 
when they navigated in the neighbourhood of 
the Picts, devastated the islands of the Orcades, 
and occupied many countries which lie on the 
Frisci sea, that is between us and the Scots, to 

* ceantJft, a promontory, a headland ; the sound of 
the last syllable is scarcely perceivable it is pronounced 
Kent. This name has no meaning in Welsh. 

300 THE GAEL. 

the confines of the Picts. And Hengist invited, 
by degrees, many ships, with people, to him into 
Kent, so that the islands they left were deprived 
of all their inhabitants, and his people daily in- 
creased in number and power. 

CAP. xxxvin. " And above all these evil things 
of Vortigern, he took his own daughter to be his 
wife, and had by her a son. But when this was 
made known to Saint Germanus, he went, with 
all the British clergy, to rebuke the king. And 
while this great synod of the clergy and laity 
were in council, the king advised his daughter to 
retire to a convent, and that she should deliver 
her son into the care of Germanus and she did 
as she was desired. St. Germanus kindly took 
the boy, saying I will be a father to you, but 
not unless you obtain your father's permission for 
your head to be shaved. The boy immediately 
went, in obedience to the old saint's direction, 
to Vortigern, his father and grandfather, and 
said to him Thou art my father, may I cut off 
my hair and shave my head ? But he was silent, 
and did not answer the boy, but rose up, vehe- 
mently irritated, and sought to avoid the face of 
St. Germanus. He was then condemned, and 
cursed by the blessed Germanus and all the Bri- 
tish clergy. 


CAP. xxxix to XLIV " Contain an account 
of Vortigern consulting the magi about building 
a palace in the mountains of Hereri (or Snow- 
den), which he could not accomplish until he 
found a boy without a father. After a time he 
finds Ambrosius* who prophesies that the Saxons, 
whom he designates as a white dragon, should 
possess Britain, and dispossess the red dragon, 
or the Britons, but, eventually, the latter should 
drive them out of the island. 

CAP. XLV. " In the mean time Vortimer, the 
son of Vortigern, fought bravely against Hen- 
gist and Horsa, and drove them into the isle of 
Thanet, and three times defeated and dispersed 
them. But they sent messengers to Germany, 
calling for assistance, and an immense number 
of ships, with warlike men, came to their aid 
and fought against our kings ; sometimes they 
conquered and extended their boundaries, some- 
times they were defeated and driven away. 

CAP. XL vi. " The first battle was fought on the 
river Derevent. The second at the ford called, 
in their language, Episford, but in ours, Satha- 
negabail, (y<xt evil *n<x of the g<xb<xJl course, the 
course or passage of evil or misfortune*) ; and 

302 THE GAEL. 

there fell Horsa, and a son of Vortigern, 
whose name was Cantigern The third battle 
was in a field, near the stone of title (lapidem 
tituli), which stands on the shore of the 
sea of Gaul, and the barbarians were conquered, 
and then Vortimer was the victor, and they fled 
to their ships (chiulis), and, with their women, 
went away. A short time afterwards he died, 
but, before he died, he desired his family, although 
they inhabited another part of Britain, that 
his sepulchre should be placed in the sea-port 
from whence the enemy had departed. But 
they did not observe the injunction he gave 
them, but buried him in Lincoln. But if they 
had obeyed his commands, without doubt, through 
the prayers of St. Germanus, they would have 
obtained whatever they wished. But the bar- 
barians returned again, in great power, and be- 
cause Vortigern was their friend, on his wife's 
account, no one was bold enough to attempt their 
expulsion. For it was not on account of their 
virtue that they occupied and possessed Britain, 
but the will of God ; for against the decree of 
the Almighty, who would endeavour to act ? for 
whatsoever he wills the Lord does he rules and 
governs all men. 


CAP. XL vii. " It happened after the death 
of Vortimer, the son of Vortigern, and after the 
defeat of Hengist and his troops, by a deceitful 
advice Hengist exhorted them to make a great 
mourning for Vortimer and his army ; and sent 
ambassadors to sue for peace and perpetual amity. 
On which Vortigern took council, and the Saxon 
ambassadors went away. Afterwards they en- 
tered into a convention that both parties, the 
Britons and Saxons, should meet unarmed and 
form a firm and perfect peace. 

CAP. XL vin. " Hengist, the most wicked of 
all his family, spoke to his Saxons as follows 
( Secrete a dagger under your clothes, and when 
I shall call to you in Saxon, 'NiMED EURE 
SAXES,' (that is, ' draw your daggers'} each 
man stab his neighbouring Briton, and do it 
boldly. Spare the King alone, on account of 
my daughter, for I gave her to him in marriage, 
and it is better they should redeem him from 
us." The council met, and the Saxons spoke 
kindly, but acted like wolves. Man next 
to man, Britons and Saxons, sat alternately and 
socially. Hengist, as he said, gave the signal, 
and, in an instant, two hundred and ninety- nine 
of Vortigern's friends were murdered ; he, alone, 

304- THE GAEL. 

was made prisoner, and put into chains, and, for 
his redemption, there was given to the Saxons, 
Essex, Sussex, and Middlesex, which were thus 
unlawfully separated from the kingdom. 

CAP. XLIX. " St. Germanus preached and 
admonished Vortigern, that he should repent and 
be converted to the Lord, and should go to the 
country called after him, viz. Vortigernia, and 
there miserably hide himself with his women. 
Whereupon he persecuted St. Germanus and all 
the British clergy, who, for forty days and nights, 
prayed, kneeling on a stone, and there remained 
night and day. In the mean time Vortigern 
went to the palace he had built and called after 
his own name, viz. Dun J^ortigern, in the coun- 
try of the Dimetee, near the river Teibi^ (Tavy) 
to which he ignominiously retired. St. Germa- 
nus followed him, and having with his clergy 
fasted three days and nights ; on the fourth, about 
midnight, fire fell from heaven which burned the 
palace to the ground, and with it Vortigern and 
all his wives. This was the end of Vortigern, as 
I find mentioned in the Book of the blessed Ger- 
manus. Other writers also mention it. 

CAP. LII. " He had three sons, Vorti- 


mer,* Cantigern, and Pascent, who reigned in the 
regions of Buelt and J^ortigernianwn. After his 
father's death, the greater part of Britain was 
governed by Ambrosius. He had also a fourth 
son named Faustus,t whom St. Germanus took 
under his own care and baptized and taught, and 
built him a great house on the banks of the river 
Rhine, (Renis) which remains to this day. His 
only daughter was said to be the mother of 

CAP. LIU. "This is the genealogy of Vor- 
tigern traced backwards : Firmwail, he who 
now reigns in the region of Vortigernianum. 
The son of T/ieudubr, who is king of Buelth, 
and was son of Pascent Mac ^yguocan, Mac 
Moriud, Mac Eldat, Mac Eldoe, Mac Paul, Mac 
Mepric, Mac Briecat, Mac Pascent, Mac Vorti- 
gern, Mac (Gworthenu) Vortimer, Mac Gui- 
taul, Mac Guitolin, Mac ^/>glovi, Bonus Paulus 

* Vortimer, or Vortimor ; fO/1, chief; te<Xg ; iT)0;i, house, 
great. The head of the great house. Caniigern, cexXfl, head or 
chief; tJjea/irKX, lord. The head, or chief lord. Pascent, 

l^ea^, a purse ; cearj, head, or chief. The chief of riches, 
or the purse bearer. 

y ye<kf, or y)0f ; knowledge) art, science, understand* 
IIHJ, vmott, message ; Jp^ft coition, incest. 


306 THE GAEL. 

Mauron. There were three brothers of Glovi 
who built a great city on the banks of the Severn, 
(Sabrina) which is called in the British tongue 
Caer Glovi, in Saxon, Gloucester. 

CAP. LIV. " The blessed Germanus, after the 
death of Vortigern, returned to his own country. 
St. Patrick was at this time in captivity among 
the Scots, and his lord, or master, was called 
Milchu, to whom he was swine-herd. In the 
seventeenth year of his age, he returned from his 
captivity, and, by God's blessing, became learned 
in the Scriptures. Afterwards he went to Rome, 
and for a long time studied the mysteries of God 
and the Holy Scriptures. When he had been there 
many years, Falladius was sent 'by Celestine the 
Roman pontiff, to the Scots, who were converted 
to Christ ; but he was prohibited by God, by cer- 
tain tempests, from fulfilling his mission, because 
no one can succeed unless he be sent by the Al- 
mighty. So Palladius left Hibernia, and came to 
Britain, and died in the country of the Picts. 

CAP. LV. " Patrick being admonished by St. 
Germanus and an angel, called Victor, hearing of 
the death of Palladius, in the reign of Theodo- 
sius and Valentinian, was sent by pope Celestine 
to convert the Scots to Christianity. 

NENN1US. 307 

CAP. LVI. to LXI. " Germanus therefore sent 
him, with an old bishop, named Seger, to Ma- 
thew, a neighbouring king ; and the saint 
knowing all things which should happen to him, 
there received the grade of a bishop from king 
Mathew, and the holy bishop. He also assumed 
the name of Patricius, his former name being 
Maun. Agrilius, a priest, and Isertiiflus, a 
deacon, and several others, were ordained with 

" Having received the blessing, and being per- 
fect in all things, he went to Britain where he re- 
mained but a short time and then to Ireland. 
From the beginning of the world to the conver- 
sion of the Irish, was 5330 years. In the fifth 
year of king Loigare, Patrick began to preach 
Christ in Hibernia." The rest of these chapters 
relate to the acts of St. Patrick, which are much 
the same as given in the Book of Armagh. 

CAP. LXII and LXIH <( At this time the 
Saxons grew strong and increased in numbers 
in Britain. Hengist died, and Ochta his son went 
and settled on tbe east side of Britain in the 
kingdom of Kent, and from him descended the 
kings of that country. Arthur fought against 
them in those days, viz. the Saxons, with the kings 

x 2 


of the Britons. He was a great general and was 
successful in every battle. 

CAP. XLIII. " The first battle was at the mouth 
of the river called Glen.* The second, third, 
fourth, and fifth, upon another river called the 
Duglas^ which is in the country of Linais. The 
sixth was on the river called Bassas. The seventh 
was in the Caledonian wood, that is Cattoit Ce- 
ledon. The eighth was in Castle Gunnin, in 
which Arthur had carried the image of Jesus 
Christ, and of St. Mary, always virgin, upon his 
shoulders, and the Pagans were put to flight on 
that day, and many were slain, and dreadful 
slaughter took place in consequence by the power 
of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the holy virgin, his 
mother. (For Arthur had been to Jerusalem, 
&c.) The ninth battle was at the city of Legion. 
The tenth was on the shore of the river called 
Ribriot. The eleventh was at the mountain called 
Agned Cathregonion. The twelfth was at the 
Mountain Badon, on w r hich day Arthur with his 
own hand, slew 811 men. 

* Gale makes this the Glan in Lincolnshire, where Glems- 
ford is now, and says Vortigern gave Hengist, Lincoln, from 
whence the Britons were afterwards expelled. 

f This Duglas, Gale fixes near Wigan, in Lincolnshire. 
His other guesses are not more satisfactory. 


CAP. LXIV. " The barbarians being over- 
thrown in every battle, sought for help from 
Germany ; and thus greatly increased in numbers, 
and even the kings of Germany came over with 
their people to reign in Bri-tain. And they did 
reign down the time when Ida, the son of Eobba, 
who was the first king of Bernicia, that is Iber- 

CAP. LXV. " Ida the son of Eobba, held the 
country on the left bank of the Humber sea 
twelve years, and joined the two regions of Den- 
raberneth, in English Deira and Bernicia. El- 
fled, the daughter of Edwin, twelve days after 
Pentecost, received baptism, and an innumerable 
multitude with her. But she was first baptized ; 
Edwin on the Easter following was baptized, and 
12,000 men with him in one day. Saint Paulinus, 
archbishop of York, baptized them, and for forty 
days ceased not to baptize all the clan Ambronwn, 
that is old Saxons, and by his preaching many 
believed in Christ." 

The names of the cities of Britain from Nen- 
nius, Henry of Huntingdon, Alfred of Beverley, 


1 Caer Guerthigirn, or Vortigern somewhere 
in Pembrokeshire. 

310 THE GAEL. 

2 Caer Mimicip. 

3 Caer Meguid, or Merdic Caermarthen. 

4 Caer Eborauc York. 

5 Caer Verulam St. Albans. 

6 Caer Mauchguid. 

7 Caer-Canit Canterbury. 

8 Caer Peris Porchester. 

9 Caer Linon Leicester. 

10 Caer Gwent Winchester. 

1 1 Caer Glovi Gloucester. 

12 Caer Pensavelcoit supposed Exeter. 

13 Caer Celemon Camelet, in Somersetshire. 

14 Caer Gwinting. 

15 Caer Luadit Leeds. 

16 Caer Colun Colchester. 

17 Caer distent. 

18 Caer Graunth Grantchester, Cambridge. 

19 Caer Lunden London. 

20 Caer Guoirangen Worcester. 

21 Caer Danti Dorchester. 

22 Caer Gorieon. 

23 Caer Legion Carlisle. 

24 Caer Guarisik. 

25 Caer Britton. 

26 Caer Droithen Draiten in Shropshire ? 

27 Caer Urnach Uriconium, Wroxeter. 

28 Caer Luitcoit Lincoln. 

29 Caer Segent Silchester, near Reading, on 


the Thames, the most perfect Roman city now 

The various copies of Nennius differ in the 
readings so much that it is evident all are very 
unlike the original work of that author. The 
whole has been ascribed to Gil das, or rather 
to be a commentary on Gildas. It is evident, 
however, that there is some truth, but much em- 
bellishment. Nennius is said to have lived about 
the year 620, whereas the calculations and events 
recorded, come down to the year, A. D. 830. 

Nennius supplies evidence, of the strongest 
and most decided character, that the antient 
Britons spoke Gaelic. Every word which he 
gives, as in his own tongue, (lingua nostra,) 
is Gaelic, and not Welsh. But the most striking 
and unanswerable proof is to be found in the 
fifty-third chapter, where the pedigree of Vor- 
tigern is recited ; it is precisely in the language 
and form of all Irish pedigrees, as follows : 

Firmail son of )ie<x/im<xol 

Theudubr son of m<xc teb bub 

Pascent mac mac 

(Ap) Guocan mac mac 

Moriud mac mac 

312 THE GAEL. 

Eldat mac mac eJle 

Eldoe mac mac eJle bub 

Paul mac mac pa) I 

Mepric mac mac 

Briecat mac mac 

Pascent mac mac pea^cean 

Vortigern mac mac jrOftrJgea/m 
Guortheneu mac mac go/iteajnoe 

Guitaal mac mac 

Guitolin mac mac 

Glovi mac gtobab 

What Bonus Paulus Mauron means after 
Glovi, it is not easy to define, but it is, no doubt, 
a corrupted Gaelic epithet which the embellish- 
ers of the text of Nennius, not understanding, 
left as it was. It is very likely to have been 
beana^ pata^ mJ/ieaJn, or Glovi, the prosperous 
and happy king, literally, of the palace of con- 
stant pleasure. The names of Hugh Duff, Slack 
Hugh, Eile das, handsome Eile, and indeed all 
the other names are of constant occurrence in 
Irish pedigrees. 

Gale in his notes " on the various readings of 
Nennius," on this chapter, says : " I suspect 
this Vortigern to have been of the tribe of the 
Picts, or Scots, who, by the help of the Picts, be- 


came possessed of the kingdom.' 5 * Gale saw 
clearly that this pedigree was not Welsh, but 
being satisfied that the Welsh were the antient 
Britons, ventured this suspicion, at a hazard, to 
account for so great an anomaly. 

I consider the chapters 62, 63, and 64, to have 
been interpolations. Arthur is introduced in an 
unusual and unnatural manner, quite as a di- 
gression, and appears out of place. The scenes 
of his exploits were all in North Britain, as the 
Caledonian Wood indicates, when the Saxons 
were encroaching on the territory of the Picts. 

It would appear from Nennius, that the Gaelic 
British race kept possession of most of South 
Wales, till about the eighth or ninth century, 
when the history of the Welsh commences under 
Roderick the Great. The pedigree of the des- 
cendants of Vortigern brings it down to that 
period, being ten generations, which in common y 
computation is about three hundred years. 

The notes of Gale on Nennius, demonstrate 
the greatest variance, not only as to expression, 

* Hoec genealogia addita fuisse videtur a Samuele ego sus- 
picor Guortigcrnurn fuisse gencre Pictum, vel Scytham ; qui 
Pictorum ope ad regnum pervenerit." 


and the names of individuals, but in the sense. 
It appears that the original work of Nennius 
was very small ; but in subsequent ages was en- 
larged, by adding the acts of individuals of 
after-times. At length the feats of Arthur 
found a place, although he was a Pict, and of 
a different race from the Gaelic Britons. 


< I /** ftt^k ( "^ & 

I. " 

^^**<-> -*>t- / y 0W;' 


The prefatory epistle of Geoffrey of Mon- 
mouth, addressed to Robert, earl of Gloucester, 
son to king Henry I. by Nest a, daughter of Rhys 
ap Tudor, prince of South Wales, shows what 
were then the opinions respecting the early his- 
tory of Britain. He found the information con- 
tained in Gildas and Bede, not at all flattering 
to the vanity of his countrymen. There was 
no evidence, in either, to identify, or even con- 
nect, the history of the Welsh people with that 
of the antient Britons, and he tells us he had 
looked in vain for information for the purpose. 
His words are : 

" Having, in the course of various readings 
and meditations, taken up the subject of the 
history of the kings of Britain, I was sur- 
prised to find that neither Gildas or Bede, though 


they have written copiously concerning them, 
have taken any notice of those kings who lived 
before the incarnation of our Lord, or even of 
Arthur, or many more who succeeded that event ; 
although their actions merit eternal celebrity, and 
are, by many nations, firmly retained in mind, 
and recited, from memory, with pleasure. These, 
and similar reflections, had often occurred to me, 
when Walter, archdeacon of Oxford, a person pre- 
eminent in eloquence, and the knowledge of fo- 
reign history, brought me a very old book written 
in the British language, (Welsh) which gives, in 
very good language, a regular chronological his- 
tory of the British kings from Brutus, the first 
king, to Cadwalader, the son of Cadwallon. This 
book I have, at his request, carefully translated 
into Latin, &c. &c." 

Here we have an assertion, that, though neither 
Gildas nor Bede took any notice of Arthur and 
the other kings from Brutus, their history was 
well known in the traditions of his countryman, 
(and other nations,) the Welsh, by whom they 
were recited with pleasure. 

Allowing this story to be true, it only amounts 
to this, that Walter, the archdeacon, brought him 
an old legendary romance, the compilation, or pro- 


duction, of some fanciful visionary writer, 
which he thought proper to adopt as the ground- 
work of an imaginary history of Britain. Such 
parts as were consistent with Welsh traditions, 
he embellished and augmented, and thus formed 
what has been received, by the too credulous self- 
love of his countrymen, as a veritable history, 
to which it has equal pretensions with the Mirror 
of Knighthood, or the History of the illus- 
trious Valentine and Orson, sons of the mag- 
nificent Emperor of Greece. 

^Before the appearance of Geoffrey's Book, the 
early history of Wales was a blank, and the 
origin of the Welsh obscure and little known, 
for the first time, they were grafted by Geoffrey 
on the stock of the antient Britons./ 

Polydore Vergil, after speaking in great praise 
of Gildas, cautions his readers against the pseudo 
writer who appeared with his name " ut tempes- 
tive lectorem nefarise fraudis admoneamus." This 
was the book now called Nennius, which certainly 
was originally a work worthy of credit, as it con- 
tains passages (notwithstanding the care which 
has been taken to fit it to Welsh story, and cor- 
rupt it by additions, and probably suppressions and 


alterations) totally at variance with the theory of 
history, which Geoffrey attempted to establish. 

Poly (lore Vergil also cautions his readers 
against giving credit to other writers, and among 
them to Geoffrey ; he says : 

" And, in more recent times, to excuse the Bri- 
tons of their faults, a writer starts up, who com- 
piles a ridiculous context of fictions, and, with 
impudent vanity extols their virtues far above 
those of the Macedonians and Romans. He was 
called Geoffrey r , of the sirname of Arthur, who 
relates many fictitious things of king Arthur and 
the antient Britons, invented by himself, but pre- 
tended to be translated by him into Latin, which 
he palms on the world with the sacred name of true 
history. With bare-faced impudence also he added 
a long story respecting the prophecies and divi- 
nations of one Merlin, as if he had also translated 
them into Latin, and published them, thus endea- 
vouring to support his history by approved and 
imrnoveable prophecies." 

This is severe, but not altogether unjust cri- 
ticism. Leland wrote a tract which he called 
" Assertio Arthur is" published by Hearm, in 


the Appendix to " Lelandi Collectanea" in which, 
however, he. failed to make a case of acquittal for 

Geoffrey of Monmouth, being the only founda- 
tion of Welsh history, has with no small zeal and 
warmth, been supported and defended by the 
Welsh historians. 

In the year 1811, the Rev. Peter Roberts, 
published an English version of Geoffrey, under 
the title of " The Chronicle of the kings of 
Britain" translated from the Welsh copy attri- 
buted to Tysilio, with original dissertations on 
Gildas, the Brut, the primary population of Bri- 
tain, the laws of Dyfnwall Moelmyd, and the 
antient British "church. To set up Geoffrey, 
he found it necessary to put down Gildas, their 
statements being quite inconsistent with each 
other. Mr. Roberts' zeal, in defence of the 
traditions of his country, is entitled to respect, 
and it must be admitted, that he treated the 
subject fairly, though not always with cool- 
ness and temper. I am not inclined to admit 
the accuracy of the motto he adopted " De 
Gentis antiquitate et origine magis creditur 
ipsi genti, atque vicinis quam remotis et externis" 


This is not universally the case, and when the 
early history of a country, or a saint, is unknown, 
the ingenuity of the cloister has never been 
wanting to supply the defect. He says ; 

" The influence which the history and epistle 
attributed to Gildas, has had upon the minds of 
the greater part of those who have written con- 
cerning the antiquities of Britain, is well known 
to every man who has in any degree made them 
his study. As a person highly respected for his 
learning, even so as to have acquired the appella- 
tion of the wise, a deference has been paid to 
his name, which it was impossible to justify by 
the writings to which it is attached ; and some- 
times with a promptitude and zeal that seem to 
indicate more of the satisfaction in having an 
apology for not making an inquiry, than of the 
wish to know whether these writings were worthy 
of credit. It is true that Leland, Lhuyd, and even 
Usher and Stillingfleet, have been led to give them 
credit ; not merely on the name, but as having 
found them referred to decidedly by writers of 
the IQth century, and that an epistle of Gildas is 
referred to by Bede. But whilst they attended 
to these references, they do not appear to have 
given that attention to the writings themselves, 

GILDAS. 321 

which was extremely necessary. They do, in- 
deed, consider the copies as imperfect and cor- 
rupted, but this seems to be the utmost," 

It will be admitted, that the above statement 
would rather tend to impress an unbiassed mind 
that the deference paid to the writings of Gildas, 
by those judicious, as well as eminently learned 
writers, was founded on grounds not to be easily 
shaken. An author frequently quoted by writers 
of the twelfth century, and mentioned by Bede 
himself, who died so early in the eighth as A. D. 
736, must be considered worthy of the respect 
he has received from the most eminent historical 
writers of the modern times. It must be from 
the inconsistencies discoverable in the writings 
themselves that he must be tried ; and, therefore, 
Mr. Roberts proceeds to examine him by that 
ordeal. A mode of trial by which " Poor 
Geoffrey" as Mr. Roberts calls him, has been 
tried and condemned by the unanimous verdict 
of all but Welsh writers. 

How Gildas passes through the ordeal will now 
appear. Mr, Roberts proceeds : 

" By this means an importance has been given 
to them, which, probably, had it not been for a 



single assertion, they never would have acquired ; 
as the historic narrative is little or nothing, and 
often known to be false, and the epistle is a mere 
farrago of calumny." 

Again " This assertion, which is indubitably 
false, is found at the end of the second chapter 
of the History. It states his intention to com- 
pile his history, ' not so much from the writings 
of the country, or testimonies of their writings, 
(because, if such ever existed, they were not 
to be found, having been either burned or car- 
ried away by the exiles,) as from foreign autho- 
rities, though frequently deficient." 

" Having considered and examined the whole 
of these writings attentively, I found, not, in- 
deed, to my surprize, but to my satisfaction, that 
there is in them sufficient evidence that they are 
forgeries, exclusive of abundant external evi- 
dence. This I will now endeavour to prove from 
internal and external evidence." 

Mr. Roberts then proceeds to state, that Gil- 
das indulged himself in an " uninterrupted strain 
of enmity against Britain, and partiality to every 
thing Roman : no topic of censure, no occasion 
of insult, no representation by which he can 

GILDAS. 323 

lower the estimation of the country and its inha- 
bitants, occurs to him, but he employs it with a 
marked malignity, unless he can point out some- 
thing of a connection with Rome to excuse the 
exception." " This is deliberate animosity 
against his own nation," "for which he deserves" 
"the deliberate execration of his own country, 
and every honest man." 

This is very strong language, and exhibits a 
feeling not likely to afford Poor Gildas an im- 
partial trial. What is here objected, however, 
rather establishes than destroys the authenti- 
city of the Gildas we possess, by insinuating 
that it has taken the place of the real Gildas, 
of whom William of Malmesbury thus speaks 
" He was neither a weak nor inadequate histo- 
rian ; and that to him the Britons were indebted 
for whatever estimation they have in other na- 

This character cannot, says Mr. Roberts, be 
given to the Gildas we possess, which is verbose, 
inflated, involved, and tedious. The language 
and style of Gildas is certainly querulous, but it 
is polished and eloquent, though he says it 
" rambles through periods of insufferable length, 


with a tediousness that wearies the eye and the 

He afterwards quotes Lilius Gyraldus, who 
wrote 1450, who says Gildas wrote " in an easy 
flowing style" whom he found quoted in every old 
British History. 

From these Mr. Roberts infers, that the Gildas 
we possess must be a forgery, and that the ge- 
nuine Gildas is lost a conclusion to which few 
will give their adhesion. 

The evidence he brings forward rather es- 
tablishes the converse. Gildas was a Roman 
Briton his language was Latin which he 
wrote in a conceited style, the foible of his coun- 
trymen, who piqued themselves on the elegance 
of their Latin. 

Mr. Roberts' pedigree of Gildas is not worthy 
of notice ; there was nothing more common 
among such fabricators as Geoffrey, or the writer 
of the life of St. Tielo, than to hook on an emi- 
nent person to a fictitious genealogy ; nor are his 
observations, on the religious opinions, of the 
weight he wishes to give them. Those observa- 

GILDAS. 325 

tions may look very like interpolations, in favour 
of the doctrines of the Roman Church, but they 
do not impeach the general credit of Gildas. 

Mr. Roberts brings forward another argument 
to prove the alledged writings of Gildas a for- 
gery, " beyond a possibility of doubt" He 
says "It could not fail to be observed that 
Nennius and Asserius had given the explanation 
of Welsh words in their histories ; something of 
this kind it was necessary to attempt in a forgery ; 
this writer has, therefore, attempted to do the 
same in one instance, and in that one he has 
failed, viz. in his interpretation of the name 
Cuneglas, which he gives thus * Cuneglas, 
Romand linqud, lanio fulve ;' and in the inter- 
pretation of another name he has betrayed him- 

" Whether there ever was a prince of the 
name of Cuneglas, or not, is of as little conse- 
quence as certainty ; and, whether there was or 
not, the interpretation of the name is such, that 
I can, of my own knowledge, I believe, safely 
affirm, that the Welsh language does not afford 
any single word, or combination of words, simi- 
lar to Cuneglas, whose signification will ap- 
proach it. Neither will the Cornish or Armoric 


dialects, as far as the dictionaries of Price and 
Lliuyd extend, afford any such. All that can be 
said of the attempt is, that the writer wanted an 
interpretation and invented one" 

" In the second instance he is not more suc- 
cessful. Speaking of the invasion of Britain by 
the Saxons, he says, that nation came over 
c tribus (ut ejus lingua exprimetur) cyulis, nostrd 
lingua, longis navibus" In three keels, as they 
are called in their language ; that is, in ours, 
long ships." Is it then credible that Gildas, 
who was a Briton, and of the British Church, 
could consider the Latin language as his own, 
and say of it, nostrd lingua ? Certainly not. 
To account, then, for such a mode of expression 
will be very difficult, unless upon the supposition 
that the writer was of Italian origin, or one of 
the Church of Rome. That he was one or the 
other, I believe ; and, perhaps, both." 

Let us now examine these two objections of 
Mr. Roberts, which are of no trifling importance, 
when made by a learned and honest Welshman, 
zealous for his country's honor, and warm and 
impassioned in his reproaches. He tells you that 
Cuneglas has no meaning in the] Welsh lan- 
guage, and, therefore, Gildas must be a forgery ; 

GILDAS, 327 

but instead of having such a tendency, it esta- 
blishes the genuine character of Gil das, " beyond 
a possibility of doubt," to use Mr. Roberts' own 
phrase, for it is another strong evidence that the 
Welsh was not the language of the Britons. In 
the Gaelic, Cuneglas has exactly the meaning 
ascribed to it by Gildas culne, lanio ; 

or the hoary butcher or blood hound. This 
objection, therefore, proves the exact converse 
of what Mr. Roberts supposed. 

The second objection is scarcely necessary to 
be answered. The British language had, during 
the period of near five hundred years, that Bri- 
tain had been a Roman province, been superseded 
by the Latin, and got into disuse, and nearly 
forgotten, except in remote provinces, the proba- 
bility of which requires no stronger evidence than 
what has taken place in Ireland within the last two 
hundred years. In the time of James I. the Irish 
was universally spoken, even by the gentry, in all 
parts of Ireland, now not one native of Leinster, 
even of the lower orders, in a thousand, under- 
stand a word of it, and very few of the higher 
orders in the remote parts of Ireland. It is there- 
fore, nothing extraordinary in Gildas calling the 
Latin lingua nostrd, for he was a Roman Briton, 
and spoke Latin, and only knew the British, as a 


scholar. The names of persons were probably 
the extent of the British tongue known among 
the people of his day. 

Mr. Roberts supplies in another place, im- 
portant testimony as to the difference between 
the Welsh and the Gaelic languages, of which I 
could not refuse to avail myself in support of that 
position which is so essential to establish my third 
position, that those nations who are not Gael, are 
not Celtse. He says : 

" The learned and acute Whitaker, has, in my 
opinion, fully proved that the names, Celtse, 
Galatse, and Gauls, belong to the Gael. But if 
these names belong to the Gael, they most cer- 
tainly cannot, with any propriety, belong to the 
Cymry. It is true that the Greek and Roman 
historians have used these names with great lati- 
tude ; but it does not follow that they applied 
them correctly. Pliny says : ' Persee illos (Scy- 
thas) Sacos in universum app ell aver e a proxima 
gente.' * The Persians gave to the Scythians in 
general, the name of Sacce, from that of the 
nation nearest them. 9 And thus it has frequently 
happened in different ages, that the name first 
known, became a general name for the inhabitants 
of an extensive territory, though they were of 


distinct nations and languages. If the Greeks 
became first acquainted with the nation called 
Galatae, they would naturally enough compre- 
hend under the name, another neighbouring 
nation, whose language they did not understand, 
or who were connected with the Galatse by poli- 
tical ties. Hence, I conceive, that from such a 
general name no decisive evidence can be drawn 
as to the general natural identity of those com- 
prized under it. This can be inferred only from 
identity of language, custom, and laws, but more 
especially from that of language, as the other 
two are often adopted. Since, therefore, the 
languages of the Cymry and Gael are perfectly 
distinct, they must be distinct nations ; and if the 
distinction had been cautiously attended to, much 
confusion, both in history and etymology would 
have been avoided. The principle of this dis- 
tinction is at least as old as the time of Dionysius 
of Halicarnassus. It is that on which he decides 
that the Tyrrheni and the Pelasgi were distinct 
nations. His words are ' If the natural affinity 
produces similarity of language, the reverse pro- 
duces diversity of language ; on this principle 
I am persuaded that the Pelasgi are a different 
people from the Tyrrhenians. 9 

" The argument is just, and this principle is 


the only one I know of, by which the question 
can be ultimately decided. Had Mr. Whitaker 
known either the Welsh or Gaelic language well, 
I am persuaded he would have been very far from 
supposing that the Cymry and Gael were the same 
people, for he would have found that either of 
their languages is of no more use to the under- 
standing of the other, than the mere knowledge 
of the Latin to the understanding of the Greek. 
There is about one word in fifteen, similar, but 
rarely the same in sound and signification in both 
languages. In the first nine columns of the Irish 
Dictionary, printed by Lhuyd, in his Archseologia 
there are four hundred words, of which I have 
not been able to discover more than twenty, in 
common to both languages, nor iave I succeeded 
better in several trials. Moreover the gramma- 
tical structure, as to the declension and construc- 
tion, are radically different. The Welsh, though 
abundant in radical words, and copious in com- 
pounds, has left but few radical synonimes ; the 
Gael, if I may judge from the Dictionaries, 
abounds with them ; a circumstance which proves 
the Gael must have had intimate intercourse* 

* A strong corroboration of the Phenician origin of the 


with other nations, and that the Cymbri had not, 
on their way thither. The difference between the 
two languages, I have, in my own experience, 
but too much reason to regret, for my own sake, 
as it deprives me of much pleasure, which, without 
devoting more time than I have been able to 
spare, I could not attain to in the perusal of 
works in the Irish or Erse. Neither does the 
best Irish scholar living, my learned friend. Ge- 
neral Vallancey, understand the Welsh. I am 
fully aware, that what I have said is not in unison 
with the opinion prevalent amongst antiquaries ; 
but as that opinion has been founded mostly, and 
I believe wholly, on such a knowledge of the two 
languages as may have been derived from diction- 
aries only, I feel the less hesitation in stating the 
fact which they have mistaken. The Cimbri, 
and the Celtse have both been great and power- 
ful nations ; and both, by turns, in many instances 
been in possession of the same countries, singly, 
and in common, in France and England, more es- 
pecially, and have names imposed by the one, and 
the other, and sometimes to be found within the 
same territory ; many such words have become 
common to both languages, and others in conse- 
quence of intercourse. But this is, I think, the 
utmost ; unless those radical words which, as 
having been constituent parts of the original 


language of mankind, are yet to be found in the 
languages of various and distant countries to be 
included ; and also technical terms, and the 
names of animals and planets, of which the former 
generally belong to the language of those who 
invented that which they signify, and the latter 
to the language of the country where they are 

" From these circumstances I am persuaded 
that the Cymry and Gael, or Celtae, are distinct 
nations ; and they seem to me to have come by 
distinct routes to Britain ; the Cymry from the 
north, and the Gael by one to the south of Mount 
Hsemus and the Alps." 

The establishment of this fact was the first 
step towards developing the true early history of 
Britain ; and it is a matter of no small surprise 
and astonishment, that so acute and intelligent 
a writer as Mr. Roberts, after seeing it so 
clearly, could still continue to support the fables 
of Geoffrey of Monmouth, which it totally de- 
molishes. That he did not also see that it 
upset all the pretensions of the Welsh to 
be the Britons of Caesar's day, who are distinctly 
stated by Caesar and Tacitus, to have been the 
same people as the Gauls. 


The arguments and dicta of all the most 
eminently learned, judicious, and respectable 
of the Welsh writers, in a most extraordinary 
and effectual way, assist in prostrating the fabric 
of received Welsh history, by proving that the 
Welsh were not Celts, had nothing to do with 
Druids, and instead of being the suffering and 
pusillanimous Roman Britons, enervated, as Gildas 
says, by luxury and wickedness, valiant to do evil 
but wanting the courage and firmness requisite 
to defend their houses, altars, wives, and little 
ones, against their enemies, were the descendants 
of the barbarous but gallant Caledonian Picts, 
who invaded the Roman province at the fall of 
the empire ; and having exterminated the inha- 
bitants, made themselves masters of Wales and 
Cornwall, and subsequently of the Armorican 
province of Gaul. 

The ancestors of the Welsh were, in fact, the 
very people against whom the Saxon mercenaries 
were invited to defend the effeminate, profligate, 
and debilitated Roman provincials, the barba- 
rians who carried fire, sword, and desolation, and 
every horror into the Roman province ; the ag- 
gressors, and not the sufferers, the gallant inva- 
ders, and not the paltroons who basely refused to 
fight 'pro aris et focis.' 


Edward Lhuyd in his Welsh preface, says : 
" As for the inhabitants of Cornwall and Armo- 
rick Britain, although they lived amongst Eng- 
lish and French, their language shews, as you see 
plainly, that they were entirely Britons^/^WsA.^) 
But you will, doubtless, be at a loss for that in- 
finite number of exotic words, which, besides the 
British, (Welsh) you'll find in the Irish of Scot- 
land and Ireland. There are for this, as seems 
to me, two reasons I say, as seems, because we 
have no authority of histories, or other means, that 
may lead us unto the truth, but comparing of 
languages. In the first place, I suppose that the 
antient colonies of Ireland were two distinct 
nations co-inhabiting, Gwydhels and Scots, 
that the Gwydhels, were the old inhabi- 
tants of this island, and that the Scots came out 
of Spain. So far, therefore, as their language 
agrees either with us or the other Britains, the 
words are Gwydhelian, and for the rest, they 
must be also either Gwydhelian, lost to 
our ancestors, or else antient Scottish. So the 
second reason for their having so many unknown 
words, is, for that the Welsh, Cornish and Ar- 
morick Britains, have lost some part of their old 

From its similarity to the Welsh. 



language, (in regard they were for the space of 
almost five hundred years, viz. from the time of 
Julius Csesar to Valentinian III. under the go- 
vernment of the people of Rome.*) And thus 
'tis possible a great many of those words which 
seem to us exotic, may be old British, though we 
do not know them. According to those examples 
I have instanced in (p. 7. c. i.) nor was it only 
in North Britain that these Gwydhelians, ( Gael) 
have in the most antient times inhabited ; but 
also" England and Wales. Whether before our 
time, or contemporary with us, or both, cannot be 
determined ! But to me it seems most probable 
they were here before our coming into the island. 
And our ancestors did from time to time force 
them northward, and that from the Kintire (or 
Foreland) of Scotland, where there is but four 
leagues of sea, and from the country of Galloway 
and the Isle of Man, they passed over into Ire- 
land, as they have that way returned backward 
and forward often since. Neither was their pro- 
gress into this island out of a more remote coun- 
try than Gaul, now better known by the names 


6Ut J vff&t 

* This would have introduced Latin into the Welsh, of 
which there is, however, very little, and go to prove that 
the Welsh were never under the Roman subjection. 

336 THE GAEL. 

of the kingdoms of France, the Low Countries, 
and the Low Dutch. 

" Having now related what none have hitherto 
made mention of viz. First, that the old inha- 
bitants of Ireland consisted of two nations, Gwyd- 
helian and Scots. Secondly, that the Gwydhe- 
lians descended from the most antient Britains, 
and the Scots from Spain. Thirdly, that 
the Gwydhelians lived in the most antient 
times, not only in North Britain, (where they 
still continue intermixed with Scots, Saxons, and 
Danes,) but also in England and Wales. And 
fourthly, that the said Gwydhelians of 
England and Wales were inhabitants of Gaul 
before they came into this island. Having been 
so bold, I say, as to write such novelties, and yet 
at the same time to acknowledge that I have no 
written authority for them, I am obliged to pro- 
duce what reasons I have ; and that, as the ex- 
tent of this letter requires, in as few words as may 

" I have already proved at large, in the first 
and second sections bf this book, that our lan- 
guage agrees with a very great part of theirs ; 
and in the Irish grammar you will find that the 
genius or nature of their language in their chang- 
ing their initial letters in the same manner, is also 


agreeable to the Welsh. 5 * And as by collating 
the languages, I have found one part of the Irish 
reconcileable to the Welsh ; so by a diligent pe- 
rusal of the New Testament, and some manuscript 
papers, I received from the learned Dr. Edward 
Brown, written in the language of the Cantabri- 
ans, I have had a satisfactory knowledge as to the 
affinity of the other part with the old Spanish. f 
For though a great deal of that language be re- 
tained in the present ; yet much better preserved 
do we find it among the Cantabrians. Now, my 
reason for calling the British Irish, Gwydhelians, 
(Gael) and those of Spain, Scots., is because the 
old British manuscripts call the Picts Fitckid 
Gwydhelians ; and the Picts were Britains, 
(Welsh) without question, as appears, not only 
by the name of them in Latin and Irish, but by 
the names of the mountains and rivers in the 
Lowlands of Scotland, where they inhabited. 
And there, probably, they are yet, (though their 
language be lost) intermixed with Scots, Strath- 
clyde Britons, old Saxons, Danes, and Normans. 

* This is the only similarity, and it is but trifling and 
unimportant when compared with the great difference in 
the construction of two languages. 

f Lhuyd was deceived in this, there is no affinity between 
the Cantabrian, or Biscay an language, and the Gaelic. 



As for entitling the Spanish- Irish, Scots, there 
wants no authority, the Irish authors having con- 
stantly called the Spanish colony Kin Scuit, or 
the Scottish nation. No more, therefore, need be 
said to prove the Gwydhelians (Gael) antient 

Mr. Lhuyd then enters into a comparison be- 
tween the Irish and Biscayan, in which he dis- 
covers, as may be found in almost every tongue, 
some words having the same sound, having also 
the same meaning ; it is not necessary to follow 
him, but he concludes as follows : 

" Seeing then 'tis somewhat manifest that the 
antient inhabitants consisted of two nations, and 
that the Gwydhelians were Britons, and that 
Nennius, and others, wrote many ages since, an 
unquestionable truth, when they asserted the 
Scottish nations coming out of Spain. 

66 The next thing I have to make out is, that 
the part of them called Gwydhelians, have once 
dwelt in England and Wales. There are none 
of the Irish themselves, that I know of, amongst 
all the writings they have published about the his- 
tory and origin of their nation, that maintain 
they were possessed of England and Wales. 


And yet, whoever takes notice of a great many 
of the names of the rivers and mountains through- 
out the kingdom, will find no reason to doubt, 
but the Irish must have been the inhabitants 
when those names were imposed upon them. 
There is no name antiently more common on 
rivers than Uysk, which the Romans writ Isca and 
Osca ; and yet, as I have elsewhere observed, re- 
tained in the English, in the several names of Ask, 
Esk, Usk, and Ex, Axe, Ox, &c. Now, although 
there be a considerable river of that name in Wales, 
and another in Devon, yet the signification of the 
word is not understood, either in our language or 
the Cornish. Neither is it less vain to look for it 
in the British of Wales, Cornwall, or Armorick 
Britain, than 'twould be to search for Avon, 
which is a name of some of the rivers of England, 
in the English. The signification of the word in 
Irish, is water. And as the words Coorn, Dore, 
Stour, Taine, Dove, Avon, &c. in England, 
confess that they are no other than the Welsh 
Kum, Dur, Ysdur, Tdv, Dim, and Avon, and 
thereby shew the Welsh to be their old inhabi- 
tants so do the words, Loch, Kinuy, Ban, 
Drim, and Lechbia, and several others, make it 
manifest that the Irish were antiently possessed 
of those places j forasmuch as in their language 
the signification of the words are water, lake, a 


great river, a mountain, a back or ridge, a grey- 
stone. As for the word Uisg, (or Uisge) it is so well 
known that they use no other word at all for water. 
And I have formerly suspected, that in regard that 
there are so many rivers of that name throughout 
England, the word might have been antiently in 
our language. But having looked for it in vain 
in the old Loegrian British, still retained in Corn- 
wall, and Bass Bretagne ; and reflecting that 
it 'twas impossible, had it been once in the Bri- 
tish, that both they and we should lose a word of 
so common a use, and of so necessary a significa- 
tion, I could find no place to doubt but that the 
Gwydhelians have formerly lived all over the 
kingdom, and that our ancestors had forced the 
greatest part of them to retire to the north, and to 
Ireland, in the very same manner as the Romans 
afterwards subdued us, and as the barbarians of 
Germany and Denmark, upon the downfal of the 
Roman power, have driven us one age after ano- 
ther, to our present limits." 

This learned, intelligent, and able Welshman, 
was well acquainted with the Irish and Scottish 
Gaelic, and spoke the Welsh as his mother 
tongue. In addressing the Welsh, in their own 
language, who are perhaps national above all 
others, on a subject of great interest, he tells them, 


in substance, that they are comparatively a recent 
colony in Wales, and that the Gwydhelians, or 
Gael, a people who spoke Irish, were their pre- 
decessors, as well in their beautiful and romantic 
country, as in the other parts of Britain, but does 
not even hint at the period when the Welsh be- 
came possessors of the country, but says "it 
cannot be determined" ^ 

Mr. Lhuyd also, in a letter to Rowland, the 
author of * Mona Antiqua/ published in that 
work, p. 334, states that he found in the public 
library at Cambridge, "a very antient MS. of 
Juvencus, a Spanish priest, who turned the Gos- 
pel into heroic verse, in the time of Constantine. 
'Twas written upon very thick parchment, in 
that character we call the Irish, but was indeed 
antiently the British, whence both they and the 
Saxons received it. Turning* the leaves over, 
I observed, here and there, some words glossed 
or interpreted by other more familiar Latin, and 
sometimes by British, whereby I learned that the 
Britains pronounced the letter m in the midst and 
at the end of words, as we do v consonant, which 
accounts for the name Cadvan being written 
Catamanus at Llan Gadwaladr" 

The peculiarity mentioned here of the m 


having the power of the v 9 is Irish ; an m with 
the point over it, in the middle of a word, is al- 
ways so pronounced or mute. Thus again, Mr. 
Lhuyd proves that the antient Britons spoke 
what we now call Irish. What Mr. Lhuyd sup- 
poses to be, and calls British, he did not under- 
stand, for he adds 

" I learned several other notes as to their or- 
thography, with the signification of some few 
words ; but I am at a loss to know the British of 
what country it was ; for it seems so different 
from ours, that I should rather suspect it either 
for the language of the Picts, or that of the Strath- 
clwyd Britains, as perhaps you will own upon 
reading the three following Englyns,* which I 
found at the top margin of three successive pages 
in the midst of the book. I sent it to one Mr. 
, a Shropshire Welshman, and a famous lin- 
guist and critick, but he returned me such an in , 
terpretation as I shall not trouble you withal." 

Mr. Rowland, speaking of oval and round 
stone foundations on the hills in Anglesea, says :t 
" 'Tis true they were called Cyttie Gwyddelod, 

* Verses. f Mona Antiqua, p. 27. 


Irishmen's cottages ; but that must be a vulgar 
error, if, by Gwyddelod, be meant the inhabitants 
of Ireland, who never inhabited this island, so 
as to leave any remains of their creats and cot- 
tages behind them ; for those Irish, that are said 
to rob and pillage this island, seldom staid long 
in it, and if they had, they cannot well be 
supposed to leave those marks behind them, 
having found here good houses to lodge them- 
selves in, for the time they stopped, and were 
in no need of using that Irish custom, when they 
could not fail of being better provided. But if 
by Gwyddelod be meant the aborigines, the first 
inhabitants, (as it is not unlikely it may, for the 
two words that make up that name are purely 
British, viz. Gwydd and Held) i. e. J^ood 
Rangers, which was, perhaps, the common appel- 
lation of the aborigines, lost with us, and re- 
tained only by the Irish, the objection falls, and 
the instance confirms the conjecture, that they are 
the remains of the first planter's habitations, while 
they were destroying the woods and cultivating 
the country." 

This is a far-fetched, weak, and unsatisfactory 
interpretation, but the facts recited are of great 
importance, in shewing the Welsh were not the 
original inhabitants of Wales, but that they were a 


people the Welsh called Gwyddel, or gaoJbeal, the 
very name given by them to the Irish at the pre- 
sent day, and to the Gauls in the days of Caesar ; 
gaoJ&JUj, is the same word as Celtic, or Gaelic, 
and it is pronounced as the latter. It is therefore, 
plain, that the true meaning of the words cyttie 
Gwyddelod, was cottages of the Gael, i. e. the 
primitive inhabitants. It is unnecessary to refute 
the arguments made use of by Rowland. Who were 
to give the name of woodmen to the original in- 
habitants while they were clearing the woods 
away and cultivating the soil ? Not the Welsh, 
surely, who could not be supposed to be present 
at the first settlement of their predecessors. 

Mr. Rowland, while he confesses his igno- 
rance as to the language which was first spoken 
in these western parts of Europe, somewhat 
equivocally says " All that antiquity affords us 
is, that the antientest names, in several places in 
the kingdom of France, and throughout the isle 
of Great Britain, are with the best congruity of 
sound, and reason of the thing, a sour learned 
Camden, and the French Bochart, have made 
appear, in several instances resolved to our 
present Welsh and British etymons which must 
be an argument that this language at first gave 
them those names, (generally betokening the na- 


ture, or some eminent property, of the places or 
things so named, as the first imposed names, that 
they were compounded of two or more sounds, 
expressing- different ideas generally did,) conti- 
nued on them without any great attention to this 
day." (Mona Antiqua. 32.) 

This is true, but it is to the Gaelic British 
it is applicable, not to Welsh etymons , for even 
Messrs. Lhuyd and Rowland acknowledge that 
the names of places, even in Wales itself, are not 
resolvable into Welsh etymons, but, on the con- 
trary, they are constrained to declare that the 
Welsh is not the language of the people who 
named the prominent features of their own coun- 
try. It has already been shewn that the antient 
British kings and heroes were not Welsh, and 
that they have no just title of descent from even 
their alledged progenitor, Cadwallader, who was 
a Gael and not a Cymbri. 

Rowland, therefore, was convinced that the 
language of Anglesea and Wales, which gave 
names to the places and prominent features of 
that country, was not his mother tongue, the 
Welsh, for he could not explain those denomi- 
nations in that language, although a learned man, 
and well qualified in every respect for such a 


task ; he is, therefore, driven to groundless con- 
jecture and guesses, like the empiric who specu- 
lates and acts without principle, in hopes, by 
lottery, to hit on a specific. This singular pas- 
sage follows that last quoted : 

" But whether this language, that bestowed at 
first those names upon them, made any long stay 
in those regions so remote from us, wherein it 
has left some marks and footsteps of its once 
being there ; or whether those first natives, and, 
consequently, the original languages at the first 
peopling of the world, after the universal deluge, 
like the billows of the sea, justled and jumbled 
out one another, cannot, indeed, be certainly 
affirmed, though, on the consideration of the 
passions of human nature, such a procedure 
may appear very probable j yet it looks true, 
upon very good grounds, that that language 
which first came over to the Isle of Albion or 
Great Britain, was the same that continued in it 
for many ages after, and so, consequently, must 
be the first language used and spoken in that part 
of it called the Isle of Anglesey." p. 32, 33. 

No doubt of it ; but Mr. Rowland draws the 
most extraordinary conclusion from all this not- 
withstanding the difficulties which he finds insur- 


mountable and inexplicable, still does his anxiety 
to preserve for his country the reputation of 
antiquity of residence and occupation, get the 
better of his judgment and bewilder his imagina- 
tion, in the teeth of his own powerful arguments 
to the contrary, and his just conclusion " that the 
people who gave names to the places in Wales 
must have spoken the Irish language, and that 
the Irish pirates, who in the ages comparatively 
recent, came by stealth into the land, were 
soon rooted and driven out ; so that they could 
not much prejudice the former antient speech 
here, (in Anglesey,) much less abolish it no 
other nation ever attempted our expulsion ; the 
Romans, Saxons, Danes, and Normans, sought 
only our submission, and had it, but never any of 
them sought to disseminate and enforce their 
language upon us." 

Yet, in the face of the conviction of his mind, 
and of all these impossibilities, Mr. Rowland 
concludes thus " the Welsh, the language at this 
time spoken in the Isle of Anglesey, and her 
neighbouring countries, is that very language 
brought in by her first inhabitants enlarged and 
polished by the learned druids modulated and 
sweetened by the antient bards, that no poetry 
in the world is more various and artificial." 


" Yet, though it should appear, beyond denial, 
that this antient language should, and did, keep 
perpetual residence, from first to last, in this 
little island, it cannot be doubted but that in the 
long space of some thousands of years, this lan- 
guage, though never so complete and polished, 
must very much alter in its mode and propriety 
of speaking, according to the variety of times 
and humours of the people, and so, like a conti- 
nued river, take in many branches, and, proba- 
bly, lose a few in its constant flux and current." 

I will not adduce argument in answer to this 
unsound logic, further than to observe, that if a 
language be still spoken in which all these diffi- 
culties vanish in which all the names of men, 
places, and things, in Britain and Gaul, and even 
in Wales itself, are clearly and distinctly intelli- 
gible and the people, speaking that language, 
bear the very name of those to whom the 
antient buildings in Wales are attributed, by 
the Welsh themselves can there remain a ra- 
tional doubt, on any intelligent mind, that a 
people speaking that language, must have given 
names to those places, and have been the prece- 
dent inhabitants of Wales to the Welsh ? That 
nation, and that language, is the Irish, or, pro- 
perly speaking, the Gael, or gaobJel, or gwddyl, 


of the Welsh. No change, arising from caprice, 
could alter the construction of a language, or 
render it totally different ; at all events, no such 
change has occurred in the Irish. 

An English translation of a selection from the 
triads of the Cymbry, has been given to the 
world, by the " Rev. Edward Davies, Rector of 
Bishopstown, in the County of Glamorgan," in 
a work called " Celtic Researches," published in 
1804. These are supposed to be, and are put 
forth as, the most antient and veritable authori- 
ties for the support of real Welsh history. Mr. 
Davies calls them druidical triads. Why druid- 
ical, it is difficult to discover, as there appears in 
them no internal evidence of druidic construc- 
tion or doctrine. 

But let us hear Mr. Davies " We find, 
among the oldest Welsh M.SS. many historical 
notices upon the model of the druidical triads, 
purporting to be the remains of the druidical 

" Their contents furnish, in my opinion, strong 
evidence in support of their authenticity. I 
cannot account for them at all upon other 
grounds. Many collections of these triads are 


preserved, at this day, in old copies, upon vel- 
lum . 

" I shall now lay before my reader a short 
selection, translated from a series in the second 
volume of Welsh Archeaology, p. 57- That 
series bears the following title : 

" These are triads of the Island of Britain 
that is to say, triads of memorial and record, and 
the information of remarkable men or things, 
which have been in the island of Britain, and of 
the events which befel the race of the Cymry, from 
the age of ages. 

" To the copy, from which a transcript was 
made for the London edition, the following note . 
is annexed : 

Translation " These triads were taken from 
the book of Caradoc of Nantgarvan, and from 
the book of Jevan. Brechva, by rne, Thomas 
Jones, of Tregaron, and these are all I could get 
of the three hundred."* 

* " Caradoc, of Nantgarvan, or Llangarvan, above men- 
tioned, as the copyist of one of Jones's originals, lived about 
the middle of the twelfth century. Jevan Brechva wrote 
a compendium of the Welsh Annals down to 1150." 


" I. The three pillars of the race of the island 
of Britain. 

" The first, Hu Gadarn, who first brought the 
race of Cyrmy into the island of Britain ; and 
they came from the land of Hdv, called Defro- 
bani, [where Constantinople stands,*] and 
they passed over Mor Tawch,t [the German 
ocean,] to the island of Britain, and to Llydaw,t 
where they remained. 

" The second was Prydain, the son of Aedd 
Mawr, who first established regal government, in 
the island of Britain. [Before this time there 
was no equity, but what was done by gentleness, 
nor any law but that of force.] 

" The third, Dynwal Moelmud, who first dis- 
criminated the laws and ordinances, customs 
and privileges, of the land and of the nation. 

* "The passages inclosed between hooks appear to be com- 
ments upon the original triads, added by some ancient 

f " The Coritani lay upon Mor Tawch ; it was, therefore, 
upon the east of Britain. 

^ "Letavia, or Lexovia, the water side. The name is con- 
fined, at this day, to the description of Britanny, but it co- 
vered, antiently, the entire coast of Gaul." 


[And for these reasons they were called the three 
pillars of the nation of the Cymry.] 

II. " The three benevolent tribes of Britain. 

"The first were the stock of the Cymry, who 
came with Hu Gadarn into the island of Bri- 
tain, for Hu would not have lands by fighting 
and contention, but of equity and in peace. 

" The second were the race of the Lolegrwys,* 
who came from the land of Gwas-gwyn, and was 
sprung from the primitive stock of the Cymry. 

The third were the Britons. They came from 
the land of Llydaw, and were also sprung from 
the primordial line of the Cymry. 

[And they are called the three peaceful tribes, 
because they came by mutual consent and per- 
mission, in peace and tranquillity. The three 
tribes descended from the primitive race of the 

* " The dwellers about the Loire or Liger. Gwas Gwyn, 
or Gwas Gwynt,.ihe country of the Veneti, about the mouth 
of the Loire, and not Vasconia. It was the country to which 
the Britons sent their fleet, in order to assist the Celtas of 
Gaul, their relations, against Caesar. Triad 14." 


Cymry, and the three were of one language and 
one speech. 

" III. Three tribes came, under protection, 
into the island of Britain ; and by consent, and 
permission of the nation of the Cymry, without 
weapon and without assault. 

" The first was the tribe of the Caledonians 
in the north. 

" The second was the Gwyddelian race, which 
are now in Alban. [Scotland.] 

" The third were the men of Galedin, who 
came in naked ships [canoes] into the Isle of 
Wight, when their country was drowned,* and 
had lands assigned them by the race of the 

" And they had neither privilege nor claim 
in the island of Britain, but the land and pro- 

* " Strabo, Ivii., speaks of the removal, and of the disper- 
sion of the Cimbri, in consequence of an inui^dation. This 
tradition was preserved by the Cimbri of the Chersonesus ; 
but the event must have happened when their ancestors 
dwelled in a low country," 

A a 


tection, that even granted under specified limits. 
And it was decreed that they should not enjoy 
the immunities of the native Cymry before the 
ninth generation. 

" IV. Three usurping tribes came into the 
island of Britain, and never departed out of it. 

" The first were the Coranied, who came from 
the land of Pwyl.* 

" The second were the Gwyddelian Fichti, 
who came into Alban, over the sea of Llychlyn. 

" The third were the Saxons. 

" [The Coranied are about the river Humber, 
and on the shore of Mor Tawch ; and the 
Gwddelian Fichti are in Alban, on the shore of 
the sea of Llychlyn. The Coranied united with 

* " In page 78 it is added, ' Ac or Asia pan hanoeddynt. 
And they originally came from Asia. Jones declared, 200 
years ago, thq he copied the various readings, from which 
this passage is taken, just as he found them in a copy which 
was more than 600 years old in his time. See W. Arch, 
v. 2. p. 80." 


the Saxons, and, being partly incorporated with 
them, deprived the Lolegrwys of their govern- 
ment by wrong and oppression ; and, afterwards, 
they deprived the race of the Cymry of their 
crown and sovereignty . All the Lolegrwys be- 
came Saxons, except those who are found in 
Cornwall and in the commot of Carnoban in 
Diem and Bernicia." 

The remaining triads, which relate to the 
wonders of the Cymry, are not necessary to be 
recited here ; the foregoing supply us with what 
purport to the traditions of the Welsh, as to their 
ancestors, and the antient history of their tribes. 

The first triad of Hu Gadarn, the mighty pro- 
tector, Prydain, and Dynval Moelmud, are ap- 
parently poetic personifications. 

The second are the three benevolent tribes, 
viz. the Cymry, Lolegrwys, and the Britons. 

The Cymry, who, under Hu Gadarn, first 
peopled Britain. 

The Lolegrwys, who came from Gwas-gwyn. 
Mr. Davies makes the country about the Loire 
the country of the Veneti by which it may be 


inferred, that he wishes us to understand the pre- 
sent people of Britanny to be descendants of these 

The Britons, who came from the land of 
Llydaw, which he says is Letavia, or Lexovia, the 
water side, and states to be the coast of Britanny, 
in other words, the Lolegrwys. 

These are all edged to have been the only true 
Cymry, who, according to the first article of the 
first triad, came over the Mor Taw r ch the 
Dutch or German sea a declaration, by the 
way, of their German extraction. 

There is some difficulty in defining the reason for 
classing the Cymbri in three divisions. The 
leading branch the Welsh, the governing 
tribe, who are said to have kept their land and 
language are made, after landing from the Ger- 
man sea, to traverse the fine fertile portion of 
the island, and fix the seat of government in 
barren mountains, and the least desirable part 
of their new settlement, leaving to the Lolegrwys 
and the Britons all the plain country of Britain. 
This appears rather improbable. The two latter 
tribes are made the same, and are divided merely 
to complete the conceit of a triad. The whole 


is evidently a fiction made up from the three 
modern divisions of the Cy^bri, i. e. the Welsh, 
Cornish, and Armoricans. It has been proved, 
also, that the Welsh had not the land to keep, 
though they have kept their language. 

The third triad, of the tribes who came under 
protection and permission of the nation of the 
Cymry. The Caledonians, the Gwyddelian race 
of Alban, and the men of Galedin, who came in 
consequence of their country being drowned. 
We are told they were not of the Cymry. The 
first have been proved to have spoken Welsh ; 
the second are the Irish of the highlands of 
Scotland, the third Mr. Davies supposes to have 
come from the Cimbric Chersonesus. 

The fourth triad of three usurping tribes, 
the Coranied, the Gwyddelian Fichti, and the 
Saxons. The first are intended to represent the 

The second, the Picts, whom the triad brings 
from Denmark, will be proved to have spoken 
Welsh, consequently they were Cymbri. Of the 
Saxons it is unnecessary to enlarge. 

Impressed with an anxious desire, if possible, 


to discover some solidity and foundation in these 
triads, and a wish U> give them a qualified cre- 
dence, hoping to discover in them some ground 
of their formation in truth, some general tra- 
dition which, though obscured, is grounded in 
facts, I carefully considered them, but I am coerced 
into the conclusion, that they are a clumsy mo- 
dern fiction, with as little foundation in truth as 
Geoffrey of Monmouth. 

I have great reluctance in troubling the reader 
with further remarks upon the specious, but un- 
sound, speculations of Mr. Davies, but it might 
be suppposed I did that gentleman injustice ; I, 
therefore, insert a few paragraphs, that the reader 
may judge for himself. 

" The Gauls and Britons were originally one 
people. The sons of Gaulish families came to Bri- 
tain for education. In both countries the disciples 
of Druidism, learnt the same antient forms, and 
studied the same oral maxims. The Druids of 
Britain and Gaul could, therefore, have differed 
but little in their language. 

" But in so large a country, as the jurisdiction 
of Druidism, there must have been shades of pe- 
culiarity, amongst the vernacular idioms of the 


populace, and the Armorican, or Celto-galatian 
language, in the days of Caesar, appears to have 
differed from the Welsh, much in the same degree 
as at present." 

It has been established that the real Celto-gala- 
tian bore just as much resemblance to the 
Welsh, as the present Irish to that language ; the 
two languages contain a few terms of similar 
sound and import, which, from neighbourhood 
and intercourse, they have borrowed from each 
other, but no more, while the same language is 
identical with the Irish in every particular. 

In another paragraph, (p. 211,) Mr. Davies 
says, quoting the triads : 

" The Celtic nation, at large, may be regarded 
as comprizing a race of two different characters, 
though sprung from the same family. 

" The one sort, were those who took peace- 
able possession of a country, which had never been 
previously inhabited, where they supported the 
character, ascribed in history, to the antient Hy- 
perboreans, establishing a national religion, the 
best calculated for securing peace among them- 
selves ; but which, till it was gradually changed 


by political necessities, rendered its votaries in- 
competent for the defence of their country, or 
the support of their national independence. 

" The other sort were a people who had less 
scruple in their principles, but who having been 
inured habitually to arms, before they approached 
the west, and confiding in their native prowess, 
forced their way into many possessions of their 
unresisting brethren. 

" In the Welsh, the Armorican, and the Cor- 
nish, undisputed votaries ofDruidism, we recog- 
nize the former of these two branches, and the 
latter in the Irish, or in the Highlanders. It is 
not at all necessary to suppose, that, when these 
people established themselves, the others were 
either extirpated, or entirely removed. They 
seem in several parts, to have amicably incor- 

Again, p. 233 " I would not be understood 
as meaning that our Welsh came into the pos- 
sessions of a different family who spoke the Irish 
language ; but I do mean, and represent that 
many of the simple primitives formerly possessed 
by them, and still preserved by the Irish, have 
been generally disused, though occurring in the 


oldest writers, and in the derivation or compound 
of their present language. The case with the 
Irish is exactly parallel. Many words that are 
marked as obsolete in their glossaries, are still 
understood by the common people in Wales. 

" Both of the nations, then, have thrown aside 
a part of their antient stores ; but as the Irish 
retain a more ample number of simple terms, 
than we do, and as the several tribes which use 
this dialect, or those connected with it, were not 
completely received into the pale of British Druid- 
ism, it may, I think, be inferred, that the Irish, 
after we have discarded its eastern, and such 
other adventitious terms, as cannot be derived 
from its native roots, presents the most accurate 
copy of the Celtic in its original and primitive 
state, in the same manner as the Welsh does that 
of the cultivated or Druidical Celtic." 

How contradictory, if not absurd, these sen- 
tences appear. The writer seems to feel that 
the original and primitive language of the Celtse 
was the same precisely as the Irish ; he not only 
does not deny, but asserts it, but still unaccount- 
ably insinuates, that the language of Wales is 
the Druidic Celtic ; and although the inhabitants 
of Wales and all Britain spoke the same at the 


time of the Romans, who by the way, soon abo- 
lished the order of the Druids throughout their 
whole dominion, and consequently in Wales, yet, 
since that period, the language has been purified 
and polished by these British Druids, after their 
order had been abolished ! and so changed as to 
be totally unlike the original ; while the Irish, 
among whom the order of the Druids continued 
for centuries after they had been suppressed in 
Britain, and where this same author represents 
them to have retired after having been driven out 
of Britain, are represented as " not completely 
received into the pale of British Druidism !" al- 
though they yet speak the only language which 
can be proved to have been used by the Druids. 
The Welsh triads are modern fictions, grounded 
on the more antient fabrications of Geoffrey of 
Monmouth, and are totally unworthy of credit as 
muniments of British history. 

Whitaker's History of Manchester, excited 
considerable interest, but, with the exception of 
his observations on Watling-street, there is no- 
thing in it to justify his reputation. He saw, in- 
deed, the anomalies in the early history of the 
Britons, and the difficulties in which it was in- 
volved, but he knew not how to explain the 
one or remove the other. His guesses and 


surmises having no solid foundation, are as er- 
roneous as those of his predecessors. The fol- 
lowing remarks on Watling-street, although in- 
genious, are very inaccurate. 

" From the joint testimony of Richard's Itine- 
rary, and Bede's History, it appears that the Ro- 
man road from Sandwich to Caernarvon, was dis- 
tinguished, among the Romans, by the British 
name of Guetheling or Watling-street. This has 
been hitherto supposed to be not the original, 
but a posterior name, and has long baffled all the 
analytical powers of etymology. But it is plainly 
derived, as Dr. Stukely formerly conjectured it to 
be, from the same principle which gave name to 
the Ikening-street. Both were denominated 
from the people to whom they were carried, the 

latter confessedly from the Iceni^aLthe eastern -$ 

j ^_ 

coast. So the Watling-street imports that the 
road which led to the Gatheli, or Guetheli, of Ire- 
land. And this British appellation of the road 
among the Romans, attests it to have been pre- 

viously a British road. The Guetheling, or Wat- 
ling-street, must have originally been denomi- 
nated by the Britons Sarn Guethelin, or the road 
of the Irish." 

Mr. Whitaker has here guessed nearly but not 


precisely the meaning of the name. The true 
meaning is the street or road made by the 
Gael, or Gwydhell, not of, or leading to, the 
Irish. He was not aware that the Britons were 
Gael, or he would have seen the true meaning. 
This road was made, no doubt, long before the 
arrival of the Romans, and is another unanswer- 
able proof that the Britons had advanced in civi- 
lization far beyond the state of barbarism which 
has been so inconsiderately allotted to them. Sarn 
is not a British but Welsh word ; and if ever the 
Watling-street was called Sarn Guethelin, it must 
have been at a later period. Mr. Whitaker says, 
" both (Watling and the Ikening-street,) must 
have been begun by the Belgse of the Southern 
countries. The Belgse were strongly actuated 
by commercial spirit, &c." This is at variance 
with the evidence of Csesar, and indeed of Tacitus, 
and all others ; the Belgse and their kindred tribes 
of Germany were more warlike, but less civilized 
than the Gauls, or Celtae, and are designated as 
lazy and slothful, while the Celtse are always de- 
cribed as very industrious, and ardently addicted 
to commercial pursuits. 

The fact of the Celtic Britons being Gael, is 
quite conclusive of the road being made by them, 
besides the Belgse were possessed only of incon- 


siderable patches of the coast, and were recently 
settled there in the time of Caesar. Thus, all 
Mr. Whitaker's speculations on the progress of 
commerce among the Belgse of Britain falls to the 
ground. He seems to have thought the separate 
tribes to have been different people ; when he 
talks of the Cantii rivalling the Durotriges in 
commerce, in Caesar's day, he did not know they 
were but tribes of the same nation, and their local 
position alone gave them advantages for trade over 
each other. Mr. Whitaker made great exertions 
to elucidate antient British history, but still he 
left the question as unsettled as he found 
it. He talks of the irruption of the Carnabii, 
and the invasion of the Brigantes, &c. &c. which 
was all gratuitous speculation, they were but 
tribes of the same nation, whose names were 
terms either to express their residence, descent, 
or peculiar circumstances. In p. 147, he says : 
" There appears to have been two nations in Bri- 
tain, distinguished by the one denomination of 
Uiccii, Uices, or Vices. The name of Ic, Uc, or 
Vic, signifies a brave people. This, therefore, 
was naturally a popular name among the military 
nations of the Celtae. Thus we find Aulerci 
Euberovices, the Aulerci Brannovices, and the 
Leomovices in Gaul. And thus we find the Huic- 


cii, or Vices, and the Ord-uices, or Or do- vices, in 
Britain." Mr. Whitaker does not favour us with 
the language in which Vices means a brave 

This is another instance of the utter impossi- 
bility of ascertaining the true etymology of names 
given by any people, without first ascertaining 
the language that people spoke. Mr. Whitaker 
supposed the Welsh to have been the antient 
British, and having got on a wrong road, his wan- 
derings were, and could not be otherwise than 
erroneous, fanciful, and ridiculous. 

*tt *& 


f# y /^y ^&*$ 

- ^ *' 


y 4 

J ^1 <*<?/. mfrt 44* yd*. 

^&~^^ f &^f '#XZf4 $j/ 

fa ..;r*~4T^j?& .,/. 



Irish Article. 

In Gaelic there is but one article, <xn the, as 
<xn jre/i the man an bean, the woman. 


There are two articles in the Welsh language, 
Y, and YR, but they both mean the, and are used 
differently, merely for euphony's sake. 

Irish Verbs. 

Gaelic Verbs have but one conjugation. 
There are three tenses, present, preterite and 
future. The auxiliary verb, beJc, to be. 

I am. t^iDaJb, we are. 

, thou art. t^ta), ye are. 

, he is. t:3Jt>, they are. 


t;^ me, I am. t& f)i), we are. 
t& tu, thou art. t& ^Jb, ye are. 
t^ ^e, he is. t3 ^Jcxb, they are. 

7mA Infinitivf Mood. 

bo beJc, or 01 beJr, to be. 


Present <X beJt, being 1 . 
Past J<x/t no-bejc, having been. 
Future dtytj beJt, about to be. 

Welsh f^erbs. 

There are two classes of verbs, intransitive 
and the transitive. 

Welsh Infinitive Mood. 

bod, to be, to exist. 
bod 9 to be bu, was bi, is to be. 
byz, is to be, will be. 
yw, ydyw, ydi, is oes, there is. 
oez ydoezy was sy> syz, is. 
mae, is, there is ys 9 is ydys, the action going 


bod, wedi myned, to be after going-, to have 

dad, mynediad yn, au, yn myned, going. 

yn bod, bwyad, being. 

adwy, mynedadwy, being to go ; capable of 

bodadwy, going to be ; capable of being. 

Perfect edig, mynededig, wedi myned, gone. 

bodedig, endued with being. 

wedi bod, having been. 

Irish Indicative Mood. 

I go. 

thou goest. 
ce)b f&, he goeth. 
ceJbm)t), we go. 
ye go. 
, they go. 


awyv I go, or am going. 
awyt thou goest, or art going. 
ayw he goest, or is going. 
aym we go, or he is going. 

a y9 y e ^> or are g m s- 

awynt they go, or are going. 


Irish Imperative. 

JmcJ j, go thou. 

JnotJgetxb fe, let him go. 

JmtJjJmty% JnotJ groJb, JmtrJ jeab ^)nn, let us go. 

JmtJge, or JnotJ geab ^Jb go ye. 

Jmt-JgbJ^- or JnotJ jeab ^Jab let them go. 


awyv let me go. 
a go thou. 
tied let him go. 
awn let us go. 
ewq go ye. 
dent let them go. 

Irish Relative. 
teJbe;", that goes. 


cu<xb<*/-, I went. 

, thou went. 
, he went. 
ccmro<x/i. we went. 
cu<xBa/t, ye went. 

, they went ; or, 
me, tu, ^, I, thou, he, &c. 


Perfect tense. 

ais I have gone. 
aist thou hast gone. 
aes he has gone. 
aesam we have gone. 
aesag ye have gone. 
aesant they have gone. 

Irish Future. 

;t<xcpxb, or fiactab, I will go. 
;i<xccJ/i, thou wilt go. 
, he will go. 
, or ;t<i.c<xm, we will go. 
ye will go. 
;iaca7b, they will go ; or, 
, tii, &c. 

First future. 

av I will go. 
ai thou wilt go. 
a he will go. 

we will go. 
q ye will go. 
diit they will go. 

B b 5 


Second future. 

aov I shall have gone. 
dot thou shalt have gone. 
do he shall have gone. 
dom we shall have gone. 
doz ye shall have gone. 
tiont they shall have gone. 

Irish Negative of the present tense Indicative 
t v) t&Jj)m, I do not go, &c. 

The subjunctive Mood is the same as the Indi- 
cative, prefixing m<J, if, to each person. 

Present no^ tejgjm, if I go. 
, &c. &c. 


e. m cr<xb<xb<x/i. 

Future m^ /Kicjrab. m^ ;-uxcj:a*D<xoJb. 

, that doth not go. 



nj beaca/% I did not go. 

n] beacaJ;-, thou didst not go. 

nj beacaJb f&, he did not go. 

nj beacama/i, we did not go. 

/7j beacaba/i, ye did not go. 

flj beac aba/i, they did not go ; or, 

nj beacaJb no^, &c. 

nac nbe<xc<x)b, that did not go. 

r>1 ^<xcj:<xb, as in the indicative. 

c /tacaJb, that will not go. 

Conditional Mood. 


, I would go. 
jiacjra, thou wouldst go. 
;iacj:ab ^-, he would go. 
jtacjrama);-, we would go. 

, ye would go. 

, they would go. 


b, that would go. 

Past Consuetudinal. 

, I used to go. 
atu, thou usedst to go. 
e, he used to go. 
, we used to go. 
teJbJbe, ye used to go. . 
, they used to go. 

b, that used to go. 

b'Jmte<xct, bo brl, to go. 

Present Participle. 
<X brl, going. 

Past. Future. 

Mjt orl, having gone. 4 ^ krl, about to go. 


The subjunctive, optative, and potential moods, 
have a common form with the indicative, so far 
as regards the inflections. They are formed by 
the aid of auxiliary words, as in the English, by 
adverbs and conjunctions. 


Impersonal conjugation of primitive verbs, 

tier be there going. 
eler be there going off. 
aid there was going. 
dethid there was a going. 
ciesid there was a gone. 
ozid there was a going on. 
awyd, or aeihwyd, or atliwyd ezwide there 
has been a going. 

dethasia, or athasid there had been a going. 
air there 'will be a going. 

Irish Nouns. 

In Irish the genders are two, masculine and 

Welsh Nouns. 

In Welsh the genders are three, masculine, fe- 
minine, and neuter. 

Irish Numbers. 

There are but two numbers in the Irish lan- 
guage, singular and plural. 


There are three numbers in the Welsh, sin- 
gular, dual, void plural. 


The plural is formed two ways by the inflection 
of their vowels and by terminations, but all sub- 
stantives may have their plurals formed by ter- 

Irish Declensions. 

The formation of cases depend on the last 
vowel of the nominative. The cases are five, no- 
minative, genitive, dative, accusative, and voca- 
tive, as 

Singular. Plural. 

<x/7 b^/ib, the poet. na b^j^b, the poets. 

<xn MJ/tb, of the poet. n<x rob^ftb, of the poets, 
bon rob^/ib, to the poet, bo n<x b-fybaJb, to the poets, 
an b^fytb, the poet. TKX b^/iba, the poets. 

<x b&J/ib, o poet. <x b/ib<x, o poets. 


The substantives undergo no changes or in- 
flexions, therefore the Welsh has no declensions 
or cases. 

Irish Pronouns. 

Simple. Emphatic. 

me, I, me. m^e, myself. 

tu, thou. trpx, thyself. 

fe, he. /-ej^ean, himself. 


Simple. Emphatic. 

/-Jb or )b, ye or you. f)bf& or Jfy-e, yourself. 

e, he, or him. Jb, o ye. 

<x, his. ej^ean, himself. 

f), or, 7, she. p//~J, herself. 

<x, hers. Jf J, herself. 

Simple. Emphatic. 

wit, v?', z, ym I, me. myvi, myself. 

ni, we, us. nyni^ ourselves. 

ninnau, I also. myvinnau^ myself also. 

nynnau, we also. nyninnau, ourselves also. 

ti 9 thou. tydi) thyself. 

$wi, you. $y$wi> yourselves. 

tithau, thou also. tydithau, thyself also. 

ftaithau, you. qyqwithau, yourselves also. 

ev, he him. eve, he himself. 

hwynt, they. hwyntwy, themselves. 

hwyntau, they also, hwythau^ they also. 
hi, she, her. hyhi, herself. 

hithan, she also. hyhythan, herself also. 

hwy, they. hwynt, they, them. 
hwythau, they also. 
hwyntwy, they themselves. 


e. it. 
vo. it. 
o. it. 

evo. itself. 
nhw, they. 
nwythan, they also. 
nhwy^ they. 
yz, them. 

The difference in the construction of the Irish 
and Welsh languages, here exhibited, is sufficient 
of itself to demonstrate that the origin of the 
two nations could not have been the 


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In the first chapter it was suggested that the 
Welsh, Cornish, and Armoricans, or the people 
of Britanny, should be separated from Bishop 
Percy's Celtic Pedigree, and formed into a distinct 
genealogy for the Cimbric nation. Much testimony 
has been already adduced to prove the Cymbri 
were not Celts ; the object of the present chapter 
is to produce evidence and argument to shew 
who they were. It may be as well to repeat the 
Cimbric pedigree. 

The Cimbri, a nation from the north of 
Europe, who inhabited Jutland, or 
the Cimbric Chersonesus. 

The Caledonian Cymbri, The Cimbri, who invad- 

who first peopled the British ed Gaul, and were destroyed 

Islands, afterwards called by Marius. A. A. c. 103. 


The Welsh. Cornish. Armoricans, 

or Bretons. 


The Bishop of Dromore, in his Preface to 
Mallet's Northern Antiquities, says : 

" Before I quit this subject of the Gothic or 
Teutonic languages, I must observe, that the old 
Scandinavian tongue is commonly called the 
CIMBRIC, or CIMBRO-GOTHIC, as it was the dialect 
which chiefly prevailed among the Gothic tribes, 
who inhabited the CIMBRICA CHERSONESUS, &c. 
But whether the antient CIMBRI, and their con- 
federates, the TEUTONES, who made the irrup- 
tion into the Roman Empire, in the time of 
Marius, were a CELTIC or a GOTHIC people, may, 
perhaps, admit of some disquisition. 

" They who contend that they were Celts, 
may urge the resemblance of the name of Cimbri 
to that of Cymry> by which the Britons have 
always called themselves in their own language. 
They may also produce the authority of Appian, 
who expressly calls the Cimbri CELTS, as well as 
of several of the Roman authors, who scruple 
not to name them GAULS.* It may further be 

* "Appianus in Illyricis, Cimbros Celtas addito quos 
Cimbros vacant, appellavit. Et evolve Florum Lib. III. cap. 
3. Sallustium Bell. Jugurth. in fine. Rufum Brev. Cap. VI. 
qui omnes Cimbros diserte Gallos et ab extremis Galliae 
profugos nominarunt." Speneri Nobitia Germanise Antiques. 
Hal. Magd. 1717 4to. p. 123. 


observed, in favour of this opinion, that the 
emigration of so large a body of the old Celtic 
inhabitants would facilitate the invasion of the 
Gothic tribes who succeeded them in these 
northern settlements, and will account for the 
rapid conquests of Odin and his Asiatic fol- 
lowers. It might also be conjectured, that the 
small scattered remains of these old Celtic 
Cimbri, were the savage men, who lurked up 
and down in the forests and mountains, as de- 
scribed by the antient Icelandic historians, and 
who, in their size and ferocity, so well corres- 
pond with the descriptions given us of their 
countrymen that invaded the Roman Empire. 
Thus far such an opinion is equally consistent 
both with the Roman and northern historians." 

These are the arguments in favour of the 
Celtic origin of the Cimbri. The first and 
strongest is removed by proving that the antient 
Britons never called themselves Cimbri, and that 
the Welsh who did were not the antient Britons 
of Caesar's day. The observations of Appian, 
and other Roman writers, are answered by the ^J 
Bishop, and the emigration of the Cimbri being 
caused by an inundation from the ocean, as stated 
by Florus, and the gigantic savages of the woods, S4+*$- 
are applicable to either hypothesis. But to pro- 
ceed with the Bishop's arguments. 



" On the other hand, that the Cimbri of 
Marius were not a Celtic but a German or 
Gothic people, is an opinion that may be sup- 
ported with no slight arguments. On this head 
it may be observed, with our author M. Mallet, 
* that the antients generally considered this peo* 
pie a branch of the Germans,' and that their tall 
stature, and general character, rather corresponds 
with the description of the Germans than of the 
Celts. That as for the name of Cimbri ', or Clinker, 
it is resolvable into a word in the German lan- 
guage, which signifies WARRIOR or WARLIKE.^ And 

* " Germanis quidem Camp exercitum aut locum ubi 
exercitus castra metatur significat ; inde ipsis vir castrensis 
militSirisKemfferetKempher, et Kemper, et Kimber, etKamper, 
pro varietate dialectorum vocatur ; vocabulum hoc nostro 
(sc Anglico) sermone nondum penitus exolevit ; Norfolcien- 
ses enim plebio et proletario sermone dicunt." He is a 
Kemper old man. " i. e. Senex vegetus est." Sheringhani, 
p. 57. See also Kemperye Man, in the reliques of antient 
English poetry. Vol. 1. p. 70. 

Sheringhani afterwards adds, " Illud anteni hoc loco 
omittendum non est, Cimbros quoque a proceritate coporis 
hoc nomen habere potuisse. Kimber enim alia significatione 
hominem gigantea corporis mole praeditum designat. 
Danico hodie idiomate (inquit Pontanus in additam ad 
Hist. Dan. lib. I. Kimber sive Kempe et Kemper non bel- 
latorum tantum, sed proprie Gigantem notat." Sheringhani 
p. 58. From hence it should seem, that a gigantic person 
was called Kimber^ from his resemblance to the antient 


that the authorities of the Roman historians can- 
not much be depended on, because (as had been 
before observed) they were seldom exact in the 
names they gave the barbarous nations. It may 
further be urged, that the facility with which the 
Cymbri made their way through Germany into 
Gaul, renders it probable that they were rather 
a branch of the German people, than of a race 
at constant enmity with them, like the Celts, and 
who upon that account, would have been opposed 
in their passage ; especially as the Germans ap- 
pear, in these countries, rather to have prevailed 
over the Celts, and to have forced them west- 
ward, driving them out of many of their settle- 
ments. But lastly, if the Cymbri had been a 
Celtic people, then such of them as were left 
behind in their own country, and were after- 
wards swallowed up among the succeeding Gothic 
tribes who invaded Scandinavia, would have given 
a tincture of their Celtic language to that branch 

Cimbri, rather than this people were called Cimbri, from 
their gigantic size. So that this favours the opinion that the 
Cimbri were a different race from the antient Danes, c. 
Because no nation would think of calling themselves giants, 
for if they were all uniformly gigantic, there could appear 
nothing to themselves remarkable in their size ; whereas this 
would strike another people as a primary and leading dis- 


of the Teutonic which was spoke in these coun- 
tries ; or, at least, we should have found more 
Celtic names of mountains, rivers, &c. in the 
Cimbric Chersonese, than in other Gothic set- 
tlements. But I do not find that either of these 
is the case ; the old Icelandic seems to be as free 
from any Celtic mixture, as any other Gothic 
dialect ; nor is there any remarkable prevalence 
of Celtic names in the peninsula of Jutland, 
more than in any part of Germany, where, I 
believe, its former Celtic inhabitants have, up 
and down, left behind them a few names of 
places, chiefly of natural situations, as of rivers, 
mountains, &c. This, at least, is the case in 
England ;* where, although the Britons were so 
entirely extirpated, that scarce a single word of 
the Welsh language was admitted by the Saxons, 
and although the names of the towns and villages 
are almost universally of Anglo-Saxon deriva- 
tion, yet the hills, forests, rivers, &c. have gene- 
rally retained their old Celtic names. 

" But whether the old Cimbri were Celts or 
Goths ; yet forasmuch, as from the time of Odin, 
both the Cimbrica Chersonesus, and all the neigh- 

* I have not been able to discover any Celtic names in 


bouring regions, were become entirely Gothic 
settlements, the Gothic dialect which prevailed 
in these countries is called, by antiquaries, Cy ru- 
bric, and Cymbro Gothic. It is also sometimes 
called old Icelandic, because many of the best 
writers in it came from Iceland, and because the 
Cymbric has been more perfectly preserved in 
that island than in any other settlement. To the 
old original mother tongue of all the Gothic 
dialects, it has been usual (after Yerstegan) to 
give the name of Teutonic, not so much from 
the Teutones, or Teutoni, who inhabited the 
Danish islands, and were brethren of the Cymbri, 
as from its being the antient Tuytsh, the lan- 
guage of Tuisto and his votaries, the great fa- 
ther and deity of the German tribes." 


Humphrey Lloyd, who, in his Breviary of 
Britain, published by Lewis at the end of his 
History of Britain, gives us testimony to establish 
the identity of the Cymbri with the Cimbri. He 
was a most zealous, and even a prejudiced Welsh- 
man one who sacrificed every other feeling to 
his love of country. He says : 

" The inhabitants of this region are called, in 
their mother tongue, Cymbri. In which word 
the force of the sound of the letter B is scarcely 

c c 


perceived in pronouncing. And it is very likely 
that this was the most antient name, and that 
Cambria, a region of England, was, thereof, so 

" When I perceived that the Cymbri, which 
fought so many bloody battles with Romans, 
were called by the same, name, it carne into my 
mind to enquire and search what good writers 
have thought of the beginning of that nation. 
And having read much thereof, I am so per- 
suaded that I dare avouch that it was this our 
British nation. First, the name is all one with 
ours ; then their tongue, which is a very great 
argument. For Plinius, in his fourth book, and 
thirteenth chapter, saith, that Philemon was 
called, by the Cymbri, Mori Marussium, that is 
to say, Mare Mortuum ; the dead sea, unto the 
promontory, Rubeas, &c. And our country- 
men calls the dead sea, in their language, Mor 
Maru, whereby it is manifest they were the same 
people with us. 
3 J <: '- 

" Moreover, Plutarchus, in his life of Marius, 
affirmeth, that they departed out of a far coun- 
try, and that it was not known whence they came, 
nor whither they went, but, like clouds, they is- 
sued into France and Italy with the Almayns. 


Whereupon the Romans supposed that they had 
been Germans, because they had big bodies, with 
sharp and horrible eyes. So much he. Since 
then he hath left their original unknown ; and 
our Chronicles do testify, how that the Britaynes 
bad always great familiarity with the northern 
Germans, as it is like enough that the British 
Cymbri passed over into Denmark,' whereby it 
was called Cymbrica, and so, joining with the 
Almayns, made war upon the Romans, &c. &c. 
And to confirm all this, 1 read late, in a most 
antient fragment, in the British tongue, how that, 
long since, there departed a very great army of 
Britayns into Denmark, wbicb, after many va- 
liant wars, in most parts of the worlde, never re- 
turned again. 

" But whereas divers do affirme, that these 
were the indwellers of the Danish Chersonesus ; 
hereby it appeareth false, that the Danes long 
before that time possessed that lande, as their his- 
tories do declare. Neither is there any Danish 
or Swedish writer that ever made mention of 
the Cymbri. Other some affirme that they 
descended of the inhabitants of the Cimmerian 
Bosphorus. But neither the names, neither their 
manners, neither their king's names, doo agree. 
Which if you respect, ours, they are all one. For 

c c 2 


Clodic, Lhes, Bel, Lud, Thudfach, Berich, by 
which the Kings of the Cymbri were called, be 
very common names among the Britayns." 

The Welsh call themselves Cymbri, as a name 
attached to their descent, not to the country they 
inhabit, and the generic denomination of their 
race. Cumberland, one of their first conquests 
from the Roman province, after passing the wall, 
was so called by the Saxons, as the land of the 
Cymbri, the Welsh y having the same power as 
the English u in Cumberland. 

The perfect identity of the name, with that 
of the Cymbri of the Roman writers, indicates, 
at least, the probability that they were the ances- 
tors of the Cymbry, and there are not wanting 
authorities in support of this hypothesis. 

Florus (lib. III. c. 8) gives the following ac- 
count of these people : 

" The Cymbri , the Teutones, and the Tigu- 
rini,* flying from their own country, at the extre- 
mity of Germany, in consequence of an inunda- 

* These were Celts of Helvetia. 

FLORUS. 389 

twn of the ocean, sought new possession over the 
whole world, and being repulsed from Gaul and 
Spain, as they were returning towards Italy, they 
sent ambassadors to the camp of Silanus, and 
afterwards to the senate, desiring that the warlike 
Romans would assign them a country as payment, 
and they then might command their services in 
arms. Their tender being rejected, they re- 
solved to obtain by force what was refused to their 
entreaty, and determined on invading Italy. 
Marius, the Roman General, first attacked the 
Teutones, and entirely destroyed them, and cap- 
tured their king, Theutobocchus ; he then pur- 
sued the Cimbri, who had penetrated into the 
Venetian territory, where he attacked them, and 
slew 140,000. Their wives, afterwards, who 
were with their baggage, fought with desperate 
determination, from their carts and waggons ; 
when they were refused the privilege of re- 
maining single, first killed their children, and 
either fell by each others hands, or hung them- 
selves to trees, by ropes made of their own hair. 
Their king, Beleus, fell fighting gallantly in the 

The expulsion of the Teutones and Cymbri, 
by the Gauls, is adverted to in the speech of 
Crigtonitus, in the third chapter ; and this pas- 


sage of Florus fixes the period to be about, 
A. U. C. 651, A. A. C. 99, and indicates that 
they were not Gauls. Tacitus says : 

" In the same northern part of Germany, we 
find the Cimbri on the margin of the ocean, a 
people at present of small consideration, though 
their glory can never die. Monuments of their 
former strength and importance, are still to be 
seen on either shore. Their camps and lines of 
circumvallation are not yet erased. From the 
extent of ground which they occupied, you may 
even now form an estimate of the force and re- 
sources of the state, and the account of their 
grand army, which consisted of such prodigious 
numbers, seem to be verified. It was in the year 
of Rome, 640, in the consulship of Csecilius Me- 
tellus, and Papirius Carbo, that the arms of the 
Cimbri first alarmed the world. If from that pe- 
riod we reckon to the second consulship of the 
emperor Trajan, we shall find a space of near 
210 years : so long has Germany stood at bay 
with Rome ! In the course of so obstinate a strug- 
gle, both sides have felt alternately the several 
blows of fortune, and the worst calamities of war. 
Not the Samnite, nor the republic of Carthage 
nor Spain, nor Gaul, nor the Parthian has given 
such frequent lessons to the Roman people. The 


power of the Arsacidae was riot so formidable as 
German liberty. If we except the slaughter of 
Crassus and his army, what has the east to boast 
of? Their own commander, Pacorres, was cut 
off, and the whole nation humbled by the victory 
of Ventidius. The Germans can recount their 
triumphs over Carbo, Cassius, Scaurus Aurelius, 
Servilius Csepio, and Cneius Manlius, all defeated 
or taken prisoners. With them the republic lost 
five consular armies ; and since that time, in the 
reign of Augustus, Varus perished with his three 
legions. Caius Marius, it is true, defeated the 
Germans in Italy, Julius Caesar made them retreat 
from Gaul, and Drusus Tiberius, and Germa- 
nicus, overpowered them in their own country ; 
but how much blood did these victories cost us 
The mighty projects of Caligula ended in a ridi- 
culous farce. From that period an interval of 
peace succeeded, till roused by the dissentions of 
Rome, and the civil wars that followed they 
stormed our legions in their winter quarters, and 
even planned the conquest of Gaul, Indeed we 
forced them to pass the Rhine ; but from that 
time what has been our advantage? We have 
triumphed, and Germany is still unconquered."* 

Murphy s Tacitus, vol. vii. 53, 54. 


Such is the splendid character given by an 
enemy of the brave and indomitable Cimbri and 
the German nations in general. Mr. Murphy 
gives the following note on the Cimbri. . 

" The Cimbri inhabited the Peninsula, which 
after their name was called the Cimbric, Cherso- 
nesus, and is now Jutland, including Sleswic and 
Holstein. In the consulship of Caecilius Me- 
tellus, and Papirius Carbo, A. U. C. 640, about 
111 years before the Christian era, this people, 
in conjunction with the Teutones, made an irrup- 
tion into Gaul, and having spread terror and de- 
vastation through the country, resolved to push 
the conquest into Italy. They sent a deputation 
to the senate, demanding an allotment of lands, 
and in return promising fidelity. It appears in 
the epitome of Livy Ixv. that the senate having 
refused to enter into any compromise with such 
bold invaders, the new consul, Marcus Silanus, 
marched against him. The Cimbri stormed his 
intrenchments, pillaged his camp, and put almost 
the whole of his army to the sword. This vic- 
tory was followed by the defeat of three more 
Roman generals, who lost their camp and had 
their armies cut to pieces. Florus does not hesi- 
tate to say, that Rome was on the brink of de- 
struction, had there not existed, in that age, a 


Marius, to redeem the Roman name. That offi- 
cer had triumphed over Jugurtha, and his mili- 
tary skill was equal to his valour. He gave bat- 
tle to the Teutones, at the foot of the Alps, near 
the place then called Aquae Sextae, (now Aix, in 
Provence,) and gained a complete victory. Livy 
says, (Epitome Ixviii.) that no less than 200,000 
of the enemy were slain in the action. The 
whole nation perished. Florus adds, that their 
king, Theutobochus, was taken prisoner, and in 
the triumph of Marius, his immense stature, 
towering above the heaps of warlike trophies, 
exhibited to the Roman people an astonishing 
spectacle. The Cimbri, in the mean time, 
passed over the Alps, and made a descent into 
Italy. They penetrated as far as the banks of 
Adige, and having passed that river, in spite of 
Catullus Luctatius, the Roman general, spread a 
general panic through the country. They halted 
near the Po, and sent to Marius, a second time, 
demanding a place for their habitation. Marius 
answered, that 'their brethren, the Teutones, 
already possessed more than they desired, and 
that they would not easily quit what had been 
assigned to them.' Enraged by that taunting 
raillery, the Cimbri prepared for a decisive ac- 
tion. Florus says, that their vigour was relaxed 
by the soft clime of Italy. The battle was fought, 


according' to Florus, at a place called Randium, 
on the east side of the river Lessites, which runs 
from the Alps Graiae, and falls into the Po. If 
we may believe Livy, Florus, and Plutarch, in 
the life of Marius, above 140,000 of the Cimbri 
perished in the engagement." 

The account given of the Caledonians, by the 
same writer, in the Life of Agricola, exhibit a 
strong resemblance between that people and the 

The radical difference existing between the 
Welsh and Irish languages was well known to 
Lhuyd and Rowland, who felt and admitted it, 
but wanted nerve openly to declare their convic- 
tion of that important fact. They were fully 
sensible that its promulgation would destroy all 
the cherished and darling pretensions of their 
country ; and, therefore, with a cowardice or 
subserviency, unworthy of their high character, 
endeavoured to smooth over the surface, and hide 
the defect, by special pleading, and specious ex- 
pedients. Lhuyd, in order to conceal the flaw 
in their title to a Celtic origin, took, as before 
alluded to, the extraordinary precaution of pub- 
lishing his opinion in the Welsh language, per- 
fectly certain that his own countrymen were too 


much devoted to their supposed traditional history 
to expose it. Rowland endeavours, by a species 
of frivolous and trifling arguments, even below 
contempt, to account for a total and radical 
change in the construction of the Welsh lan- 
guage, since the Roman conquest, by the agency 
of the Druids, an order of men who had ceased 
to exist, for they were abolished in Britain as 
soon as the Roman sway was well established. 

Mr. Roberts, alone, of all his countrymen, 
honestly declared what he knew to be true, that 
there is 110 affinity whatever between the two 
languages ; but he did so, evidently, with the 
apprehension of exciting against him the national 
prejudices and animosity of his countrymen. 
However, even he, it would seem, did not con- 
template or see the consequences of the establish- 
ment of that truth, but adheres to the fabulous 
history of Geoffrey with a Welshman's warmth 
and tenacity. 

The Bishop of Droinore saw the incongruity 
of the idea, that two specimens of the Pater 
Noster, so different in construction as the Gaelic 
and Welsh, could ever have proceeded from 
the game source, but conceded to the opinions 
which learned antiquaries had long received as 


unquestionable truth, having its origin in the 
frauds and forgeries of Geoffrey of Monmouth, 
and Walter, his coadjutor bolstered and kept up 
by the subsequent fabrication of the Triads 
supported by all the Welsh writers, and en- 
trenched in national vanity and credulity. It 
was, therefore, a subject which no Welshman 
dare approach ; like the dogmas of the church, 
it must be received without doubt or investigfa- 


tion, on pain of the severest censure. To ques- 
tion the truth of the Welsh received tradition, 
was nearly equal in culpability to doubting Holy 
Writ. No Welshman had yet ventured to pro- 
ceed so far. Mr. Roberts knocks from under 
this fabric, the only support it had, its key stone, 
without which it must collapse, when he asserts 
that the Welsh language is not Celtic. But he 
stops there ; he clings to the ruins he has caused, 
and manfully defends the breach, or rather pros- 
tration, he himself had effected. 


Had the Roman Britons been driven into Wales, 

where, according to Welsh writers, they preserved 
their independence and their language, they would 
have carried with them the language, manners, 
customs, institutions, literature, and civilization, 
of the Romans ; and as the Welsh maintained 
their independence for several centuries against 


the Saxon and Norman kings of England, it is 
not to be questioned but they would have had 
abundance of written evidence of their true his- 
tory, so as to rescue it from all doubt or question. 
Their language would also have been Latin, or a 
compound of that tongue like the French, Spanish, 
Portuguese, and English ; it ought, and would, no 
doubt, have been more pure Latin, than any of 
these, because no* subsequent political convulsion 
or conquest affected any change. What is the 
fact ? The Welsh has less of Latin, than the 
language of any nation that passed under the 
Roman sway, which is a strong evidence that they 
never were in permanent subjection to the Ro- 
mans. The same may be said of their kindred 
tribes, the Cornish and Armorican, particularly the 
latter, who, had they been the Roman Britons who 
followed Maximin to Gaul, would have more La- 
tin in the composition of their language than their 
neighbours, the French; but the reverse is the 
fact, they have scarcely any, and they call the 
modern French, of the neighbouring provinces, 
Galek, which they never would do if they them- 
selves were originally Gael. They call them- 
selves Brezonek, or Britons, and their language,/ 
is essentially Welsh. 

At the time of the Roman invasion there were 


three distinct nations inhabiting Britain, the Gael, 
the Cymbri, and the Belgce. The former were 
those who inhabited south Britain, including- Wales, 
and fought with Caesar ; the second were the Ca- 
ledonians found in North Britain by Agricolas ; 
and the third were the people from Belgic Gaul 
who had formed trifling settlements on the coasts, 
but were not either numerous or powerful. 


The Gaelic Britons have been treated of in the 
former chapters, at length ; it is now proposed to 
treat of the antient Caledonians, who were after- 
wards known by the name of Picts, and, after their 
conquest and settlement in West Britain, by the 
name of Wehli^ a name given them by the 

I am inclined to think that the antient Caledonii 
were the first inhabitants of all the British Islands, 
including Ireland. On the arrival of the Pheni- 
cian Gaelic colony, they called the inhabitants 
Britains b/iJt baoJ/ie, or painted people. They 
bore that name long before the Greeks became 
navigators, and certainly received it from the 
Phenicians. The Romans were ignorant of the 


British islands before Caesar's invasion, and he 
knew nothing of the Caledonians, or the fact of 
their painting or staining their bodies, but from 
hearsay. Tacitus is the first who gives any sue- 


cinct account of these Northern Britons in his life 
of Agricola, as follows : 

" XI. Whether the first inhabitants of Britain 
were natives of the island, or adventitious settlers, 
is a question lost in the mists of antiquity. The 
Britons, like other barbarous nations, have no 
monuments of their history. They differ in ha- 
bit and make of their bodies, and have various in- 
ferences concerning their origin. The ruddy 
hair and lusty limbs of the Caledonians indicate 
a German extraction. That the Silures were at M 
first a colony of Iberians, is concluded, not with- 
out probability, from the olive tincture of their 
skin, the natural curl of their hair, and the situa- 
tion of the country so convenient to the coast of . 
Spain. On the side opposite to Gaul, the inhabit- 
ants resemble their neighbours on the continent ; 
but whether that resemblance is the effect of one JK 
common origin, or of the climate in contiguous 
nations, operating on the make and temperament 
of the human body, is a point not easy to be de- 
cided. All circumstances considered, it is rather 
probable that a colony from Gaul took possession 
of a country so inviting by its proximity. You 
will find in both nations the same religious rites, 
and the same superstition. The two languages 
differ but little. In provoking danger they dis- 


cover the same ferocity, and in the encounter the 
same timidity. The Britons, however, not yet 
enfeebled by long peace, are possessed of superior 

Here is a distinction drawn between the Cale- 
donians and the Southern Britons. The former 
are said to indicate a German origin by fair com- 
plexion, sandy hair, large and robust form of 
limb, while the Silures, who inhabited what is now 
called South Wales, are declared to be of a Spa- 
nish race from their swarthy dark skins and curly 

After Tacitus we hear little of the Caledonians 
by that name, for, it may almost be said that they 
disappear from history. At the period of the 
decline of the Roman power in Britain, the coun- 
try which they inhabited was in the possession of 
a people called the Picts, because they painted 
their bodies, the very reason their ancestors re- 
ceived the name of Britons from the Pheni- 

It would appear, therefore, that the Phenician 
Gaelic invaders exterminated or expelled the 
Cymbric Britons from the South of Britain and 
Ireland ; those who escaped were driven to the 


north, where they were found by Agricola many 
centuries afterwards, and received a name from 
the Romans, exactly indicative of that they ob- 
tained on their first discovery by the Phenicians. 

Buchanan* says : " With respect to the Picts, 
I do not think it was either a patronymic or a 
very antient name, but was applied to them -by 
the Romans from their bodies being ornamented 
by fanciful incisions, which supposition is con- 
firmed by Claudian in the following verses 

" Ille leves Mauros, nee falso nomine Pictos 
Edomuit, Scotumque vago mucrone secutus, 
Fregit Hyperboreas remis audacibus undas. 

" He the fleet Moor subdued ; and painted Pict, 
Not falsely named. With a strange sword the Scot 
He followed ; and the Hyperborean wave 
Smote with his daring oars.'' 


" Venit et extremis legio praetenta Britannis 
Quae Scoto dat froena truci, ferroque notatas, 
Pcrlcgit examines Picto moricntc liguras. 

" The legion came which guards the utmost bounds 
Of Britain, restraining the savage Scot, 
And on the bodies of the dying Picts, 
Saw rude figures with the iron cut." 

* Hist, of Scotland, lib. ii. bo. 



" Herodian also, speaking of the same nation, 
without mentioning- their name, or expressing the 
means by which they painted or stained their bo- 
dies, says, they use no garments, but wear iron 
ornaments round the waist and neck, as other 
barbarians do gold. They also mark their bodies 
with a variety of animals of every form, and wear 
no clothing lest these ornaments should be hid. 

" As to the name of Picts, let the case be 
as it may, if the Romans translated a barbarous 
name into the Latin word of the nearest sound 
or signification, or if the barbarians adopted the 
word from the Latin, is of very little importance. 
The name is there, and it is agreed on all hands 
that the people who bore it, came from the east 
into Britain, either from Scythia, or Germany ; it 
is right to follow the authorities we find, and en- 
deavour to arrive at the truth. Nor do I see 
any more certain data to follow than the fact of 
their painting their bodies. 

" These Britons, the Ami in Germany, and 
the Agathyrsi, painted their bodies, but it was to 
render them more terrible in battle, that they 
stained themselves with the juice of herbs. The 
Picts, however, marked their skins with iron, 
&c. &c." 


This criticism of Buchanan is rather shallow, 
for it is* well known that the punctures were made 
with a sharp point of iron, and the juice of herbs, 
(madder) rubbed thereon, which makes an inde- 
lible stain. Sailors of all nations are in the habit 
of puncturing anchors, and other figures, and by 
rubbing gunpowder thereon, make on their bodies 
such stains. Tne Picts, no doubt, did the %ame 
thing with the juice of herbs. 

Whitaker suggested that the Caledonians and 
I the Picts were the same people under another 
' name ; and Mr. Chalmers ably demonstrates and 
establishes the fact in the sixth chapter of his Ca- 
ledonia^ He, however, thought the Picts and 
Gauls were, with the Southern Britons, but 
branches of the same people ; and, arguing upon 
that idea was, of course, involved in inevitable 
difficulties which he could not surmount, and in 
anomalies, which he in vain endeavoured to re- 

He supposes the provincial Roman Britons to 
have continued to have kept their original tongue, 
after they became Roman citizens, which is nei- 
ther probable nor borne out by history. Gildas, 
when he describes Cuneglas, speaks of the Latin 
as his own language " in lingua nostrd, huiio 


fulve ;" and other authorities inform us of the 
pride and conceit of the Britons in the polished 
elegance with which they spoke Latin. 

Whether the tribes who inhabited within the 
walls of Antonine and Severus, as Roman pro- 
vincials, for near four centuries, were originally 
Gaeftc or Pictish Britons, may be a question ; 
norisit of much importance ; they must, in either 
case, be considered Romans ; and consequently, if 
the latter, had altogether lost their character a-s 
Picts, spoke the Roman language, and felt and 
acted as Romans, and were as such under pro- 

Mr. Chalmers thought they were Picts, and 
that they preserved their independance for a con- 
siderable time after the fall of the empire. In 
this, it is conceived, he was mistaken. History 
states, that they immediately fell under the domi- 
nion of the Picts, with other provincials, and the 
Cumbrian or Pictish monarchy, was founded on 
the ruins of that part of the Roman province. 

In " the year 306, Constans found it neces- 
sary to come into Britain to repel the Caledo- 
nians and other Picts. Caledones aliique Picti, 
are the significant expressions of Eumenius, the 


orator, who in a panegyric, during the year 297, 
and again in 308, was the first who mentioned 
the Picti as a people. As the learned professor 
of Autun, knew the meaning of his own language, 
we are bound to regard the Caledonians and Picts 
as the same people at the end of the third cen- 
tury. Towards the conclusion of the fourth 
century, Ammianus Marcellinus, also, spoke of 
the Caledonians and Picts as the same people : 
4 Eo tempore Picti in duas gentes divisi Dicale- 
dones et Vecturipnes. 3 * : ?~&t"Ke*tti SB. : 

" Claudian about the year 400, de Bello Get- 
tico, alluded to them in the following lines : 

-ferroque notatus 

Perlegit examines Picto moriente figuras.' 

and in his panegyric on the victories of Theo- 
dosius, again speaks thus of the Picts : 

' Ille leves Mauros, nee falso nomine Pictos 

" The Caledonian people had often been men- 
tioned before by classic authors, under other 
names. The Caledonians were, on this occasion, 
called Picts, owing to their peculiar seclusion from 

* Ammian Marcell. lib. xxvii. c. 7. 


the Roman provincials on the south of the walls ; 
and they were often mentioned, during the de- 
cline of the Roman empire, by orators, historians, 
and poets, by that significant appellation. The 
name of Picts has continued, to the present day, 
the theme of antiquarian disputes, and the desig- 
nation of national history. That the Picts were 
Caledonians we have thus seen in the mention 
of classic authors, during three centuries : that 
the Caledonians, were the North Britons who 
fought Agricola at the foot of the Grampian, we 
know from the nature of events and the attes- 
tation of Tacitus."* 

Dr. Macpherson, the minister of Slate in the 
Isle of Skie, in his ' Dissertation on the Antient 
Caledonians,' section xii. says : 

" It was an established tradition a thousand 
years ago, that the Picts were the original inha- 
bitants of the northern division of Britain. Bede 
says in his Ecclesiastical History, that they came 
to Caledonia from Scythia, the European part of 
which, according to Pliny, comprehends Ger- 
many. The authority of the venerable writer 

* Chalmers Caledonia. 



was never questioned on this head ; and a belief 
has ever since obtained that the Picts were a 
different race from the Gauls who possessed the 
southern parts of Britain." 

Camden makes the following' observations on 
the language of the Picts : 

" Little can be inferred from the language, on 
account of the small information given by au- 
thors about that of the Picts. It seems, how- 
ever, to have been the same with the British 
(Welsh.) Bede writes, that the wall began at a 
place, called in the language of the Picts, Pen- 
vahel ; and Pengwall, in British, (Welsh) signifies 
the head or beginning of the wall. All over 
that part of the island, so long possessed by the 
Picts, viz : the eastern part of Scotland the 
names of many places savour of British origin, 
as Murray, Merne, counties on the sea, from the 
British (Welsh) word Mor, Aberdeen, Aberloth- 
not, Aberdore, Aberneith, q. d. Mouths of Den, 
Lothnot, Dore, and Neith, from Aber, which in 
British, (Welsh) signify the month of a river. 
Strathbolgy, Strathdu, and Strath ern, the vale of 
Bolgy, Dee, and Earne, from Strath, British, 
(Welsh) for vale. Edinburgh, the capital of the 
Picts, has an evidently British, (Welsh) mime, 

4 ' I 

408 THE CYMBR1. 

being 1 called by Ptolemy, Castrum alatam ; Eden, 
signifying in British, (Welsh) a wing. Nor 
shall J alledge, that some of the petty princes of 
the Picts are called JBridii, which in British, 
(Welsh) as has been frequently observed, means 
painted. From these instances we may not un- 
fairly conclude that the language of the Picts and 
Britains, (Welsh) were alike, and consequently 
the people the same ; though Bede speaks of the 
languages of the Britains and Picts, as distinct, 
when he seems to put languages for dialects." 

It should be kept in mind that Camden here 
means the Welsh language and people when he 
says British; and how remarkably the cir- 
cumstances mentioned in this passage, establish 
the fact of the identity of the Picts and Welsh. 
In Wales the names of the places are Irish ; in 
the -country and the residence of the Picts, they 
are JVelsh, " and consequently the people were the 
same" Bede was perfectly right in declaring 
the languages of the Britons and Picts to be dif- 
ferent ; the error was in Camden's criticism, he 
calls the Welsh, Britons. But Bede spoke of 
the Gaelic Britons who spoke Irish, or Gaelic, 
and consequently were not the same people. 

Camden, however, gives his criticism, merely 

THE P1CTS. 409 

as a conjecture, for a few lines after, he adds. 
" But this may, perhaps, be overborne by the 
authority of Bede, and I am content that what 
so great a man relates upon the information of 
others, should outweigh these conjectures" 

Tacitus, from their red hair and large limbs, 
supposes them of German extraction, but pre- 
sently after ascribes this to the climate, which 
influences the habits of the body. Whence also 
Vitruvius observes <l Under the northern polar 
regions, live nations of large proportions, taw r ny 
colour, with short red hair." 

In addition to the names mentioned by Cam- 
den, may be added as Welsh etymons : 

Elgin Al, produce Gin, skin, or wool pelt. 
Devon Dove. 

Tay Tavey. 

Clyde Clwyd, and many others which are all 

Ammianus Marcellinus, divides these Picts into 
Dicaledones and Vecturiones. Camden says : 

" I would propose to read Deucaledonii, and 


suppose them seated on the western coast of Scot- 
land, where the Deucaledonian ocean breaks in." 
Di is a prefix of the same import in the Welsh 
language, as dis in the English, and signifies se- 
parated ; the Dicaledonians, therefore, are those 
who inhabited the western coast of Scotland, and 
were separated by the mountains from the eastern 
Caledonians or Vecturiones. 

The derivation of Vecturiones appears to be 
from the Welsh Ugdernas, a superior realm, or 
the chief district, the residence of the Ucdeyrn, 
or sovereign prince ; uc, chief, deyrn, lord. The 
sound of this word Ucdeyrnas is so like the Roman 
Vecturiones, that the meaning seems palpable. 
The term Dicaledones, or separated Caledonians, 
is equally explanatory ; and the two united, 
.clearly expresses the peculiar circumstances of the 
country and people. The names also being 
Welsh, identify the antient Picts with that people. 
The term Dicaledones identify the Picts with the 
antient Caledonians. 

The old Irish name of a Pict was 
This word is a compound of c/iuJt, lively, and 
nJeacb, a tribe the lively people ; c/tuJt, is also 
the name of the harp, so that it may have had its 
origin from their playing on the harp ; 

THE PICTS. 4,11 

time, is the name of the Picts country ; tcmt, 
means both a country and the north. Either de- 
rivation is very applicable, and it is very possible 
the name of Cruithneac, was from their harp. 

The nation of harpers. 

M***nt\ ** Cwt- te4**w % 

In addition to the observations of Camden re- 
specting the Welsh names of the eastern and south- 
ern parts of Scotland ; it may be urged that the 
theatre of the acts of Arthur were in that coun- 
try, where his name is more celebrated than /;. 
in Wales, and many places are called after him, 

as Arthur's seat, near Edinburgh. 
***** o+rf 4^**^ 

/*-<<: . -. ,- <H? 4?6ue *MJpJK***- -, 

Most of the Welsh pedigrees commence with 
princes of the province of Reged, in Scotland, 
and all indicate that they came from that country ' 
to Wales. 

A*w*v / 


Mr. Lhuyd himself says in the Preface to his 
Archaealogia : " I don't profess to be an Eng- &* 
lishman, but an old Briton, and according to our 
British genealogy, descended in the male line 
from Heliodon Leathanuin, the son of Martian, ; 
the son of Keneu, the son of Coel Killsheamck, 
alias Coel Godebog, in the province of Reged, in 
Scotland, in the fourth century, before the Saxons / ' **< 
came into Britain ; but we are at a loss now for 


a modern name of that country ; and we have no 
other account of its situation, but that it is Cum- 
bria, the metropolis of which was Caer al Cluid, 
which according- to some, is now called Dunbar- 
ton, and according to others the city of Glasgow." 

It is really a matter of surprise that so palpa- 
ble a statement of the real origin, as is here 
given of the Welsh, should have escaped so in- 
telligent and astute a writer as Lhuyd, the period 
too, the fourth century, and the name of the pro- 
vince Cumbria, i.e. the country of the Cymbri, or 
Cumbria, the Welsh name for themselves. 

The Picts disappear from history altogether, 
with the Roman province, and are apparently as 
much lost as the ten tribes of Israel. What be- 
came of them ? and who were the Welsh ? They 
disappeared at the very moment the Welsh 
'seem to have obtained possession of Wales. 
The Welsh say they came from Scotland, and 
were the same people as the Strathcluyd Britons, 
the latter were the Picts. 

The Romans mention no people as inhabiting 
North Britain, but the Caledonians and Picts ; 
all history is silent on the subject of any other. 
It has been proved that the antient Britons were 


not Welsh. The County of Cumberland, and 
the province of Cumbria, denote clearly that the 
Cynibri inhabited that country ; the Welsh call 
themselves Gymbriy or Cumraeg, which is the 
same name ; they conquered Wales from the 
Romans, and were not conquered by them. In 
short, there can, I think, be no rational doubt of 
the fact, that the Picts and the pf^elsh are the 
same people. 

This appears to be established as clearly 
and demonstrably as any part of antient history 
can be, and the only reason it has not been before 
discovered, is because the subject has never been 
fully and sufficiently sifted and examined. 

The Picts made good their settlement in Ar- 
morica about the same time they subdued Cum- 
berland, Wales, and Cornwall, and have ever 
since been there, a distinct people, keeping 
up their language and customs. It is improbable, 
if not impossible, that the Armorican Bretons 
were a tribe of the antient Gauls, for the same 
causes which obliterated the language of the rest 
of Gaul, would have equally affected the province 
of Armorica ; it is absurd to suppose the po- 
lished Romans of that district alone could have 
been able to preserve their independance. No, 


the barbarian Picts seized on that province from 
the sea, as they did Wales and Cornwall, and, 
probably, conquered the three countries about 
the sanie period. 

Camden says " Should any deny that our 
Britons adopted the provincial Latin, let him 
consider what pains the Romans took to make 
the provinces speak Latin, and observe what a, 
number of Latin words have got into the British 
language, not to alledge the authority of Tacitus, 
who writes that the Britons, in Domitian's time, 
affected even the eloquence of the Latin lan- 

After detachments of the Picts had made good 
their conquest of Wales, Cornwall, and Armo- 
rica, those who remained in Pictland were en- 
gaged in constant wars with the Gael of the 
western mountains of North Britain, which 
country they had, a very short time before, con- 
quered from them ; for the Picts and Scots, 
though they appear as joint invaders of the 
Roman province, do not seem to have ever acted 
in concert, but as independent and unconnected 
plunderers. The Scots had the sole object of 
plunder, and it was not a matter of much consi- 
deration who was the object. From one in- 


eroachment on the Picts they proceeded to ano- 
ther, until they completely exterminated the 
whole race, under Kenneth Mac Alpine ; and, 
but for their colonies in Wales, Cornwall, and 
Britanny, their descendants would not now exist, 
but the name of Cymbri would have disappeared 
from the earth. 

The following* account, from Fordun, details 
their last struggle and total annihilation : 

" Kenneth M'Alpin, King of Scots, having 
determined on the conquest of the Picts, com- 
manded his troops to destroy not only the men, 
but also the women and children ; and neither to 
respect sex or holy orders, not to take prisoners, 
but to destroy every one with fire and sword. 
Therefore, in the sixth year of his reign, the 
Picts being much occupied with the defence of 
their shores against the vexatious and distressing 
depredations of the Danish pirates, Kenneth 
attacked them on their mountainous border, 
called Drum Alban^ or the back of Albion, 
which having passed, he slew many of the Picts, 
put the rest to flight, and thus conquered and 
acquired both the kingdoms of the monarchy. 
The Picts recovered a little by the help of the 
English, and for four years annoyed Kenneth. 


But after some ineffectual struggles, and destruc- 
tive slaughters, in the twelfth year of his reign, 
he engaged them seven times in one day, and 
completely destroyed the whole nation of the 
Picts ; and thus was united, under one monarch, 
the whole country from the Tyne to the Orcades-, 
as was lately prophesied by Saint Adanman, 
Abbot of Hye, which was, in all respects, con- 
firmed. So, indeed, not only were the kings 
and generals of that nation destroyed, but also 
the people, root and branch, but even their lan- 
guage is altogether obliterated, so that whatever 
is found respecting them of old times, is consi- 
dered by many to be apocryphal." 

We have now satisfactorily accounted for the 
disappearance of the Picts from Scotland, and in 
a previous part of this chapter shewn that the 
Welsh were originally a colony of Picts, who 
conquered Wales, after the withdrawing the 
Roman legions from Britain. The chapter on 
the Cymbri shews the strong probability, if it 
does not demonstrate the fact, of their being the 
same people as the Cimbri who invaded Gaul ; 
if they lose any thing by being deprived 
of their supposed Celtic ancestry, they acquire 
as antient and glorious one. Their ancestors, 


the Cimbri, were always illustrious in arms 
often a terror to the mistress of the world, and, 
eventually, one of her conquerors. It will give 
them what their triads claim for them- the ho- 
nour of being the first settlers of Britain ; it will 
restore to them the undisputed possession of their 
cherished hero Arthur ; it will shew that the 
existence and acts of that illustrious champion of 
his country were not fabulous ; in short, it will 
give the Cymbri an existence in real history, 
while it only deprives them of an imaginary po- 
sition which they never really occupied. If they 
were, in a very early age, conquered and expelled 
from the southern parts of Britain, and driven 
to the northern extremity of the island, by the 
intruding Phenician Gael, who, in their turn, 
were subdued and amalgamated with their con- 
querors, the indomitable Romans, they had the 
honour of resisting, with effect and success, the 
invincible legions of that haughty and encroach- 
ing people, and preserved their independance by 
their vigorous arms and unconquerable hearts ; 
and when the time of retribution arrived, their 
descendants rushed on the Roman province- 
extended the bounds of Pictavia beyond the wall 
re-conquered a part of their antient possessions, 
Cumberland, the northern part of England, 

E e 


the beautiful and romantic Cambria and Corn- 
wall, and even secured a part of the province of 
Gaul, which their descendants have kept to this 
day, from them called Britanny. 

' >/ 

/^4 ^ 



Why kept for the concluding chapter taken from Giraldus 
Cambrensis Nemidius Firbolgs Belgcc Tuath de Da- 
nans and Cymbri the story of the Gael before Mile- 
sius a paraphrase on the Phenician history conclusion. 

I have reserved the narrative of history, by the 
Irish themselves, for the concluding chapter, 
following the suggestion of Godfrey Higgins, by 
producing evidence, ab extra, in the first in- 
stance. If the native statements be found to 
agree with extraneous history, and accord, 
and, as it were, dovetail in with the accounts 
and circumstances of antient history, and, when 
arranged, like the portions of a dissected map, 
form a consistent whole, it claims, and will obtain, 
a deference and respect, which would be unwil- 
lingly conceded were it, in the first instance, 

E e 2 

420 THE GAEL. 

exhibited, relying on its own intrinsic weight 
and worth. 

The following statement is chiefly derived from 
the recital of Giraldus Cambrensis, which I have 
chosen to rely on rather than to rest entirely 
on Irish authority : first, because I am not 
aware of the existence of any M.S. history of 
Ireland, in the Irish language, of equal antiquity 
with Giraldus ; and, secondly, because it is desi- 
rable that the statements should be based on au- 
thority as free as possible from the imputation of 
national feeling or bias. 

The early history of every nation abounds in 
fiction, confusion, and contradiction ; why, there- 
fore, should that of Ireland be condemned if 
it partakes of an infirmity from which no early 
history is exempt. It appears almost an impos- 
sibility that any mere traditions of early ages 
and events should be clear and explicit ; the oral 
repetition of a story, in the course of a few ge- 
nerations, would make it very unlike the original 
no statement can be preserved correct which 
is not committed to writing. The Irish accounts, 
however, were, most likely, written at a very 
early period, or tl)ey could not, at this day, be so 
singularly correct a paraphrase of the Phenician 


history, given us by Herodotus, or so satisfacto- 
rily explain the history of the Belgse and Cymbri. 
But it may be objected, that if they were written, 
where are they ? They have perished. 

Where are the Carthaginian records ? where 
any vestige of their own history of the earliest 
acts of the Phenicians ? all have perished by 
time, or have been destroyed by the jealous ex- 
ertions of their rival enemies. To remove an 
obstacle to the possession of universal wealth and 
empire, the Romans not only destroyed Carthage, 
but, jealous of Phenician glory, they destroyed 
every vestige of their history which could hand 
down *to posterity the acts and acquirements of 
that extraordinary and illustrious people. De- 
lenda est Carthago, extended to her city, people, 
power, wealth, learning, science, arts, commerce, 
and even to her glory. Rome, with jealous 
avidity, would not afford a kind feeling to her 
glorious but fallen rival, or allow her an ear- 
lier place in history than herself. 

It is only in the Scriptures, and in the writers 
of Greece, we find a few scattered memoranda 
bright evidences, indeed, of the lustre and splen- 
dour of Phenician commerce and civilization, 
but still very imperfect lights as to the extent of 


their advancement, but still enough to demon- 
strate their high state of cultivation. 

The Irish Gael were, no doubt, acquainted 
with letters before the Greeks, being a colony of 
the people from whom the latter borrowed their 
alphabet. There is, therefore, nothing wonder- 
ful in their handing down to their posterity their 
early history ; it would be an extraordinary cir- 
cumstance if such a history and tradition did not 
exist, as there had been no conquest or change in 
the people during the lapse of, perhaps, more 
than three thousand years. 

No other nation, of Europe, has been so 
circumstanced ; they have all, in their turns, 
been subjected to the yoke of the conqueror, 
and, in most instances, lost their original charac- 
ter as an unmixed people ; and, in general, have 
been so entirely jumbled up with their conquerors, 
that every trace of them is lost and obliterated. 
Local situation preserved the Gael of Ireland 
pure, and they kept the traditions of their fathers 
unadulterated a singular and extraordinary 
phenomenon in the history of nations. Many 
causes have tended to the destruction of antient 
Irish manuscripts, but there are still more ex- 


tant than of any other European nation, of a 
date previous to the 8th century. 

In claiming, for these reasons, more than ordi- 
nary credence for the antient traditions of Ire- 
land, I am not demanding more than they will be 
found to deserve, as they perfectly accord, in 
almost every respect, with the facts and circum- 
stances we acquire from other sources. 

The Irish language indicates, as observed by 
the Rev. Mr. Roberts, a commercial and navi- 
gating people, and an intercourse with many 
nations, from the vast number of its synonymes, 
especially respecting maritime affairs. There are 
near twenty different terms for the sea, a great 
number for the shore, coasts, ships, boats, &c. &c. 
most of them monosyllabic, except in compound 
words, put together to express a particular kind 
of sea, or a compound idea, which is, in itself, a 
strong corroboration of their Phenician origin. 

The Firbolgs are related to have come from 
the Euxine Sea, but the Gael are distinctly de- 
clared to have had their original settlement in 
the neighbourhood of the Red Sea, from which 
they w T andered to Egypt, Greece, Africa, and 
many other countries, before they settled in Ire- 

424 THE GAEL. 

land. They appear to have visited countries 
quite out of the beaten track to Ireland or antient 
Celtica, and their history relates facts respecting 
these early wanderings, which exactly tallies with 
the history of the Phenicians, and the cir- 
cumstances which hitherto appeared to render 
their story unworthy of credit, give it a con- 
sistency and authentic character now we know 
their true origin. The events which occur- 
red in the trading voyages of the Phenicians, 
as well as those on their military expeditions, 
are related in Irish history, but often applied to 
subsequent periods and other countries, and thus 
appears inconsistent and false, when they are but 
an erroneous arrangement of events, as to time 
and place. 

Thus the early Irish history refers to the 
whole extent of the exploits of the Gael, to 
Spain, Gaul, and Britain, as well as Ireland, and 
even to the early acts and history of the Ho- 
meritae or Arabian Phenicians. 

The Gael of Spain, Britain, and Gaul, were 
conquered by the Romans, and being amalga- 
mated with the conquerors, their history and tra- 
ditions were totally obliterated, and themselves, 
as a separate people, entirely lost ; no vestige 


remaining but the names given by them to coun- 
tries, people, mountains, c. with some promi- 
nent features of their own character handed to us 
by the Greek and Roman writers. 

The Irish having never been subjugated to the 
Roman power, have remained an unmixed and 
pure specimen of the antient Celtae ; and their 
language, customs, and religion, now enable us 
to identify them with their Phenician ancestors, 
and their traditions ascertain facts of history which 
had they also been subjected to the Roman yoke, 
must for ever have remained unknown. 

The Celtse being a colony of the Phenicians, 
were, of course, a lettered people on their first 
arrival in Europe. This is corroborated by the 
extracts herein-before given from Caesar, Dio- 
dorus, and other writers, shewing that the Gael 
were a lettered people in their day. This goes a 
great way in accounting for the accuracy of the 
traditions of civilized Ireland at a remote anti- 
quity of time, and will render all cavil on the 
subject in future, ineffectual, if not absurd. 

The Phenician Gael found the British is- 
lands in the possession of a people who, 
having the habit of painting their bodies, as 


before stated, they gave the name of b/tJt 
painted baoJne, men or people; pronounced 
Briteen painted or stained people ; and they 
called the islands b/t.Jt, painted t<xna, country 
the country of painted people. Other deriva- 
tions of these names appear forced and unsatis- 
factory when compared to these which are na- 
tural and free from objection. 

The Phenicians for some time traded with the 
Britons, but finding both islands rich in metals 
and other produce, they took hostile possession of 
the parts which best supplied their avidity for the 
precious metals, and eventually drove the antient 
inhabitants from the whole of Ireland and South 
Britain. Of the precise period they made them- 
selves masters of Celtic Gaul, we have no means 
of coming to a correct decision, but it must have 
been at a very early period, after they had se- 
cured the British islands. 

The oldest Irish history (omitting the fable of 
Partholan) distinctly states, that three nations in 
succession have possessed Ireland the Firbolgs, 
the Tuath de Danans, and the Gael, or Mi- 
lesians. The original inhabitants, the Fir- 
bolgs, after some centuries of possession, are 
said to have been exterminated, or expelled by 


the Tuath de Danans, who, in their turn, were 
driven out by the Gael, whose descendants were 
in possession at the English invasion by Henry 
II.. king of England, in the twelfth century of 
the Christian era. 


The Irish narrative respecting the Firbolgs, 
is as follows : 

About 1718 years before the Christian era, 
i#w'k~ T!e<xro<xJb, or the holy one, (the northern as well 
as eastern nations, commence their historic pe- 
digree with a deity) latinized in later days into 
Nemidius, with four sons, and a fleet of thirty- 
ships, each containing thirty persons, arrived in 
Ireland, from the Euxine sea ; and finding the 
island without inhabitants, took possession and 
settled therein. After a time his people were 
much annoyed by pirates from Africa, whom they 
called Fomorians, who wasted the coasts by their 
inroads. He fought four battles with them ; in 
the last, his son Art, who had been born in Ire- 
land, was slain with most of his people, which so 
afflicted him that he died of grief. 

428 THE GAEL. 

His descendants remained in Ireland 216 
years, during which time they had many con- 
flicts with the African pirates, who not only in- 
vaded but made settlements in, and nearly sub- 
dued the whole country, compelling the Neme- 
dians to submit to their authority, and oppressed 
them so much that they determined to leave the 
country, which they shortly after did under the 
command of Simon Breac, Jobath, and Briton 
Maol. The first is said to have sailed to Greece, 
the second to the north of, Europe, and the last 
to the north of Britain. 

After a period of about 200 years, the pos- 
terity of Simon Breac are said to have returned 
to Ireland, under the name of Firbolgs, com- 
manded by five brothers, who divided the coun- 
try among them in equal portions, and placed a 
stone in the centre of the island where all their 
shares met. The names of the brothers were 
Slainge, Rughraidhe, Geanann, Seangann, and 
Gann. Slainge, the eldest brother, was made 
monarch, or federal head, of the whole country. 
The Firbolgs kept possession for many genera- 
tions, until a prince, named Eochaid, became so- 
vereign, in whose reign the Tuath de Danans 
invaded the country. 

In the Firbolgs jrea/i, men; bolj, a bag, or 


boat of leather, we recognize the Belgce, the peo- 
ple who occupied the greater part of northern 
Gaul, in the time of Caesar, and, previously, all 
Gaul, and Britain, and they were expelled from the 
former by the Tuath de Danans, and afterwards 
from central Gaul by the Celtse. These people 
have by all Irish authorities been considered, 
and correctly, the same as the Belgse. 


&*** ?i $# '** 


In the reign of the said Eochaid, Ireland 
was invaded by a people from Denmark, called 
Tuath de Danans, under the command of a 
prince, named Nuada Tfu<xb<x at/igJob Urn, or 
Nua with the silver hand, who, having made 
good their landing, in immense numbers, at- 
tacked the Firbolg army, and slew king Eochaid 
in battle, with more than one hundred thousand 
of his people, and, in fact, nearly exterminated 
the whole race, and made themselves masters of 
their country. 

The Irish historians say these Tuath de Da- 
nans were the posterity of Briotan Maol, the 
Nemedian prince before mentioned, but more 

430 THE GAEL, 

probably it was meant, that being of a north- 
ern nation, they were of the same race. They, 
however, distinctly state, that they came from the 
land of Loghlin, or Denmark, and passed over, 
in the first instance, to the north of Scotland, 
where they continued for some time at Dovar, 
and lardovar, in other words, occupied the east 
and west coasts ; bobcat, is coast, and M/i, is 
west that is, they occupied the whole country 
from the east to the western seas. Previous 
writers have in vain puzzled themselves to find 
the names of Dovar and lardovar, in Scotland.* 
These people also are represented as great sor- 
cerers. It was them, and not the Gael, who first 
brought the Liag Fail, or stone of destiny, to 
Scotland, on which the kings of Ireland, and 
afterwards those of Scotland, used to be crowned, 

which emitted a sound on the occasion. This 

' ' ' j L* 

stone is now under the seat of the coronation 

chair, in Westminster Abbey, having been carried 
from Scone, by Edward I. They also possessed 
three other articles of superstitious value, the 
sword and spear of a certain king, named Looee 
of the long hand / and the cauldron of Daghdae, 

* Dover in Kent is, no doubt, from the same Gaelic 
word it means the sea coast. 


or the good man, which it is unnecessary to en- 
large upon. 

The history thus indirectly states, that these 
Ttiath de Danans, were the ancestors of the Cale- 
donians, or Picts, and appears to give us the true, 
or, at all events, the probable account of the in- 
vasion, conquest, and settlement of all Britain, 
as well as of Ireland, by the Gymbri, to whom 
the Gael gave the name of urnr,. north, be, of; 
baoJne, people, or north men ; people from the 
north, the literal meaning of the term they call- 
ing themselves Cymbri. The immense hordes 
which the Cimbri poured into Gaul, is an ensam- 
ple of their manner of proceeding, and accounts 
for the destruction of the entire Belgic population, 
and the instantaneous and complete occupation 
of the two islands of Britain, by an innumerable 
multitude of people. 

That this people possessed both Britain and 
Ireland on the arrival of the Gael, would appear 
by their name of Britons, which is Gaelic, and was 
given on account of the habit of painting their 
bodies, as before mentioned. 

Nna, is said to have reigned thirty years, and 
was succeeded by Breas, and he by Looe with 

432 THE GAEL. 

the white hand, and he by Delvy, who was suc- 
ceeded by Feea. 

After Feea, three poetical characters are said 
to have inherited the sovereignty, or at least three 
individuals, on whom mysterious names were im- 
posed, to inspire confidence in their own people, 
and terror in the enemy ; probably on account of 
the emergency of the case arising from the inva- 
sion of their country by the Milesian Gael. 
They were Maccuill, or the child of evil ; Mac- 
ceacht, the child of power, and Mac Greine, the 
child of the sun. It is not an unusual occur- 
rence among rude and barbarous people, to 
invest their generals with high sounding mys- 
terious names on great emergencies. 

Such is the traditional history of the Tuath 
de Danans, handed down by the Milesian Gael, 
their conquerors, which, if it does not give us an 
unquestionable narrative of events, at least sup- 
plies us with one consistent and probable, borne 
out by other and extraneous accounts and cir- 
cumstances which entitle it to considerable de- 
ference, as respectable testimony. 



The annals of Tigernach, or as the name is 
pronounced, Tierna^ the most antient of the 
written chronicles of Ireland, now extant, com- 
mence with Cimbaoth, the son of Fintain, who 
began his reign in the year 305, A. C. the fourth 
year of the 118 Olympiad, and the 4-46 of the 
city of Rome, 4433 of the Julian period, and &** 
A. M. 3899. Tierna was a monk of the abbey of 
Clonmacnoise, and died A. D. 1088. In the very 
first passage of his Chronicles, he says ' ' Qmnia tf** ** 
monumenta Scotorum usque Cimbaoth incerta t*i*#* *W 
erant." His character for accuracy and fidelity 
is unimpeachable, and his work is honourable to 
the literary celebrity of his country. 

Although he says the monuments of the Scoti 
before 305, A. C. are uncertain ; he does not in- 
timate that the traditions of his country were 
unworthy of credit, but rather that the written 
testimony, the monumenta, failed to supply un- 
questionable and certain history. 

It appears from Caesar that the Gauls were 
attentive to, and prided themselves on the accu- 
racy of their pedigrees, and were most anxious 


434 THE GAEL. 

on a subject on which they placed so much 
value. It has been, it is hoped, satisfactorily 
established, that they were a branch of the same 
stock as the Gael of Ireland, where the same 
propensity and anxious desire has existed, and 
still exists, even among the lowest peasantry, of 
the Gaelic tribes, few of whom would fail, at this 
moment, to recite, not only their own immediate 
ancestors for eight or ten generations, up to some 
distinguished individual, but can also relate the 
descent of most of the people of their neigh- 
bourhood and clan. 

This feeling has tended to preserve, tradition- 
ally, the history of the descent of their kings 
and princes, from a very remote antiquity, and 
by means of genealogical poems, sung by their 
hereditary bards and senachies, or chroniclers 
(who are described by Diodorus Siculus, as ex- 
isting also among the Gauls,) continued down 
to times comparatively recent, and at length, 
committed to writing, embellished, undoubtedly, 
by fancy, with heroic acts, and exaggerated by 
poetic fiction. Still the thread of genealogy 
and the line of history has been preserved in 
a manner, worthy of consideration ; and when 
corroborated, as it is by external evidence, 
may be received, not only as the best tes- 
timony of the verity of history, but worthy of 


as much, as the relations or hearsay of Hero- 
dotus, or any other antient historian. 

The history of the Gael before their arrival 
in Ireland, according to their own accounts, com- 
mences, like that of most other nations, with a 
hero, or half divinity, who invented, or rather 
instructed them in the useful arts of husbandry 
and commerce. The descent given of the Irish 
patriarch, from Japhet, the son of Noah, may 
have been the addition of some writer, after 
the introduction of Christianity, when they be- 
came acquainted with the Hebrew Scriptures. 

Feme Farsa, (jreJ/ie, husbandman, f<x/y<x 
instructor') the instructor of husbandmen, or, as 
later writers have latinized] his name, Fenius, is 
the first person mentioned in the Irish story as 
the great leader of their tribe. He is said to 
have been a king of the Scots, fcult, Scuits 
or wanderers ; some have made him king of 
that undefined country, Scythia, a modern error, 
on account of his people being called Scuits, or 
wanderers. He had two sons, Nenual, who as 
his father's prime minister, or regent, governed 
the plains of Shinaar, or Sanaar, and Niul, or 
the Champion, who had a kingdom called Capi- 
cirunt, near the Red Sea. 

436 THE GAEL. 

This latter is a barbarous name for a coun- 
try, but, when examined, all objection vanishes, 
and its meaning corroborates, and not estab- 
lishes the truth of the tradition, in a most re- 
markable manner. It has reference to that part 
of Arabia Felix, abounding in wax, which 
Herodotus tells us the Phenicians occupied before 
they settled on the coast of Syria, in the Mediter- 
ranean, and it is a compound word meaning the 
mouth of the river of the country producing 
gum or wax ; c<xb, a mouth <x of cM/i wax or 
gum <xB<Xtt a river.* If this be accidental ety- 
mology it is a very extraordinary combination, 
especially when all the other names and circum- 
stances are considered. 

Niul, or the Champion, was succeeded by his 
son Oaodhal, or, as it is pronounced Gael, from 
whom his descendants have their name, who was 
father of Easru, or the provident, who died in 
Egypt ; his son Sru, or the prodigal, was father 
of Eber Scuit, or Eber the navigating wanderer, 

His son Begamain, or Biodgamainighe, the 
thrifty, or prudent, c liter&lly the enemy of scarcity, 
succeeded him, whose son 

* Pronounced Cabaceeraun, 


Ogamain, or Begamain the younger, was his 
successor, father of Tait,* (or Mercury) the 
promoter of trade, who was father of another 

Ogamain, (or Adnamain) who fought with 
Reoffaloir, &e<xbatoJ/i, the crafty one, and slew him. 

Ogamain had three sons Ealloid, (e<xl<xb, skil- 
ful} a military commander. Lamfhion (Urn jrtofl, 
white or pure hand} and Lamglas (lam gUf, grey 
or brown hand). 

Lamfhion was a great warrior, and was father 
of Heber Glunnfion, (&lun jrJon, pure and chaste) 
who is said to have been a prince of great wis- 
dom, and was the father of 

Faobhar glas, (jxxaBoijt gldf , of the dark sharp 
sword),~or Eabrac, (e<xB/i<xb, the man of iron, the 
strong) who was father of 

Niannual, (n ton-nemU, the illustrious and noble) 
who was the father of 

NUAGAOT (naa new, gaot sea). The name of 
this prince affords a very extraordinary accord- 

* bM talc The god Tait, or Teutates, the Celtic Mercury. 

438 THE GAEL. 

ance with the statements of Herodotus and 
Dionysius, cited in pages 41, 42, and 43, that the 
Phenicians inhabited the coast of the Red Sea be- 
fore they possessed Tyre and Sidon on the Me- 
diterranean. Here we have a prince called by the 
name of New Sea, in honour, no doubt, of his 
discovery of the Mediterranean. Can this also 
be accidental ? His son 

Ealloid, (e<xl<xb, or the skilful or prudent) whose 


Earchada, e<x^caba, the replenisher, restorer, 
whose son 

IK Dagdae, or bag, good b<xe, man, whose son 
Breatha, or the judicious, sailed with four tran- 
sports, each having twenty-four men and twenty- 
four women, and discovered Spain, where he built 

' . 

the town Brachar. How exactly this account tal- 
lies with probability, and synchronises with other 
history and unquestionable facts. His son 

Briogan, or Breegan,born in Spain, 6/1)5, high, 
noble, an, man, who built the city of Brigantium. 
He is said to have had a numerous issue Bile, or 
Belus, or Baal, Cualine, or the curly -headed, 
Cualla, or the companion, Blath, a blossom, Aible, 


a spark of fire, Breagha, comfort. Muirthemhue, 
(routy, the sea, te<xm, expert aeb, eye) or the ex- 
pert seaman or navigator, and Ith, (Jt, corn, 

Bile, or Belius, was the eldest son and father 
of Galamb, or Milesius. 

Gallamb, 5<xoJl, a kindred or family Urn, a 
hand, or power, i. e. chief of the tribe wielding 
the sceptre or command. He was also called 
Milesius, possibly from roJleab, a thousand or 
commander of thousands. This appears to have 
been a common name, or title, among the Phe- 
nicians, for Cadmus, who taught the Greeks let- 
ters, was also styled Milesius.* 

In this short statement the Phenician history 
appears paraphrased in a remarkable manner, and 
too palpably to be mistaken. 

* Josephus in his first book against Apion, writes thus : 
" Ot [.lev TQL ras urropia 1 } eTTixeipijffavTes av^!"pa^)eiv Trap 

avrour, Xe%a Bia TOV? Trepl Ka/toi/ re rov fiiheffiov" " Qui 

historias apud eos conscribere tentavere, id est. Cadmus 

Milesius." Vossius DE HIST. GREC. 5. 

Timagines, another Phenician author, who was also called 



Fenius Farsa, the instructor in husbandry and 
letters, governed in the plains of Shinaar, or 
Sanaar, on the Red Sea, in the gum or wax coun- 
try ; and Herodotus states, that the Phenicians 
inhabited the city of Sanaa, also situated in that 
neghbourhood, see pag-es 41, 12. Arc. and the 
brief sketch of Phenician history throughout. 

We have here many names mentioned by the 
Greek writers, as the heroes of early history as 
Nil, Sihor, Osihor, Toth, Belus and Ogmius, 
which are the Niul, Sni, Asru, Tait, Bile, and 
Ogamain, of Irish history. The learned and 
venerable Charles O'Conor of Balenagar, first 
<? these names in juxta-position in his short, 
but valuable dissertations on the History of Ire- 
land, the first attempt to place Irish History on 
a sound basis, which was much improved upon 
by his learned and kind-hearted grandson, the 
late Rev. Dr. Charles O'Conor. 

It is calculated to have been in the year 1269, 
before Christ,, when Chebres was king of Egypt, 
and Deborah judged Israel, that Heber, Here- 
mon and Ir, with Ith, their uncle, four Pheni- 
cian generals with a large force from Spain, which 
had been conquered, and settled by Daghdae, 


about one hundred years previously, invaded the 
British islands, having conquered the king Mac- 
greine, (or the son of the Son, or Apollo) sub- 
jugated both islands. 

We have no history of the Gael of Britain to 
guide us, but we may fairly conclude the early 
history of Phenician conquest applied to both 
countries, and also to Celtic Gaul, which they 
certainly also conquered and settled, as ap- 
pears clearly by the descendants of Heber, Bran, 
and Ir, appearing among the tribes of Gaul and 
Britain in Eubero vices, Brannovies, Ordovices 
and Silures, as before alluded to. 

Heber and Heremon, each became sovereign 
of a moiety of Ireland, but after a short period 
they disagreed, and having, as usual on such oc- 
casions, referred their dispute to the decision of 
the sword, Heber was slain, and Heremon be- 
came sole monarch of Ireland, and held it four- 
teen years. It is very probable, that it was after 
the death of Heber that his tribe or followers, 
with those of Ir, sought new settlements in Bri- 
tain and Gaul, and conquered those countries. 

Heremon is said to have reigned alone for four- 
teen years, and was succeeded by his three sons 


Muine, Luine, and Laine, who governed 

Many points of great interest yet remain to 
be investigated, illustrative of the antient history 
of the Gael, or Scoti, and their ancestors, the 
Phenicians ; but the first object is obtained if a 
foundation has been laid demonstrating the grand 
principia of their origin, language, and descent, 
from the Phenicians. If that has been accom- 
plished, the means of illustration are provided, 
by which many points may be now ascertained, 
which were hitherto in utter darkness ; the thick 
clouds have been dispersed, and the features of 
the landscape have become more defined as the 
mist cleared away. We are now able to speak 
with something like logical certainty to points, on 
which hitherto, at most, we could but hazard a 
surmise. The number of facts collected and 
brought to bear on antient history for the first 
time, supplies a fulcrum to the mind, while it satis- 
fies and convinces. It is no longer necessary to 
rest on uncertain probabilities, or questionable 
data. The complete identity of the Phenician 
and Irish languages explains, makes palpable, and 
elucidates, not only the history and geography 
of Europe, but most of the antient maritime 
world, and in fact removes every difficulty to the 


acquirement of correct notions of the events of 
the earliest times. 

Personages and places involved in fable, ob- 
scured by metaphor and allegory, confused, and 
misunderstood, by this language have been made 
intelligible in the elements of their names. Such 
places as the Riphean Mountains and the Hyr- 
cinian Forests, which like Cape Fly-away of the 
mariner, has eluded the grasp of the most intelli- 
gent geographer and etymologist, have been de- 
fined and made amenable, and Hercules himself 
with his adversary Geryon, reduced to their pro- 
per station and position. 

I trust the great body of facts and data con- 
densed into this volume, will be found to justify 
the confidence with which the conclusions have 
been drawn from them. The work has been exe- 
cuted, I am sensible, very imperfectly ; but the 
value and importance of the points elucidated, 
will atone, in some degree, for its defects. Should 
what has been written prove interesting to the 
public, and life and health permit, this very in- 
teresting subject will be followed up by further 


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Abeila, or Ceuta, explained, 103. 

Abomeneus, 61. 

Abravannus River, 205. 

Abybaal king of Tyre, 56. 

Acquitani, explained, 193. 

Adonis, Thammuz, 56. 

Adraste, 224. 

Adur River, 206. 

Adurni Estuary, 216. 

^dui, 141, 143, 189. 

^Etius, the Roman Consul, 271, 274. 

Africa, 47. 

Ages of the world, 289. 

Agli-Belus, 231. 

Ailithre, what, 243. 

Aire River, 205. 

Albion and Bergion, 23. 

Alduabis River, 194. 

Alen River, 205. 

.Alesia, a town of Gaul, its name 
explained, 171. 

Alexander besieges Tyre, and takes 
it, 63 Diodorus Siculus his ac- 
count of the siege, 70.* 

Allier River, 195. 

Allobroges, 193. 

Amber, its Gaelic name, 21. 

Ambiorix, 196. 

Ambrones, 141, 189. 

Ambrosius Aurelius, 277. 

Ammon, Jupiter, 61. 

Ammonia, Astaroth, 60. 

Anan River, 206. 

Andraste 224, 233, 234. 

Anker River, 205. 

Apollo Grannus, 230. 

Archers in Gaul, 171. 

Ardoena, 232. 

Argonauts, expedition of, 29. 

Ark, a good model, 75. 

Ariovistus, 150. 
Armoricans, not Celts, 6, 7- 
Arthur, king, the scene of his ex- 
ploits, not fabulous, 307, 417. 
Arvad, people of, 32, 33. 
Arviragus, 196. 
Astaroth, 50, 60. 
Astarte, 242. 

Asterinus, king of Tyre, 66. 
Attrebatii, 200. 
Avaricum, siege of, 170. 
Aulerci, 141, 199, 

Brannovices, 189. 

Cenomanni, ibid. 

Avon River, 206. 
Axe do ibid. 

Baal, 50, 223, 224, 226-7, 229, 243, 253 

Berith, 57. 

Magon, 229. 

Peor, 57. 

Samain, ibid. 

Tsephon, ibid. 

Zebub, ibid. 

king of Tyre, 68. 

Baltinne, 245, 

Badezor, king of Tyre, 67. 

Bain River, 206. 

Bajocasses, people, 141, 189. 

Baleares islands, name explained, 102. 

Balccartus, kin<$ of Tyre, 66. 

Ballinascellig, 244, 

Barca family, 68. 

Bards of the Gauls, 183. 

Barle River, 206. 

Barlengasislands, nameexplained,104. 

Bartholomew, 291. 

Belatucadrue, 227- 

Belerium, 253. 

Beleni Fons, 253. 


Belasama, 224, 232, 236. 

Estuary, 216. 

Belgae of Britain, 136. 

Belinus, 226, 253. 

Belsamen, ibid. 

Belus, his worship, 226, 231, 58. 

Bel us, king of Tyre, 67- 

Benna, 218. 

Birt River, 206. 

Biscayan, or Basque language, 338. 

Bituriges, 141. 

Cubi, 189. 

Vibisci, 190. 

Blackwater River, 206. 

Blythe do ibid. 

Boadicea, 196, 233. 

Boderia Estuary, 215. 

Bodotria do ibid. 

Boldre River, 206. 

Boli people, 141, 189. 

Bollin River, 206. 

Brannovices people, 441. 

Brent River, 206. 

Briga,what, as a prefix and postfix, 1 05. 

Brigantes, 200. 

Britain, Breviary of, 385 name ex- 
plained,426 people of, their names 
collated with the Gaelic 200 cities 
of, 309, 310 estuaries of, 2 16. 

British customs, 217 weapons, 219. 

Briton Maol, 429. 

Britons, 139 -conquered by Hannibal, 
24 same people as the Gauls, 141 
had great store of cattle, 156 
used gold, brass, and iron rings for 
money, ib had much tin, ib. 
did not eat the hen, hare, or goose, 
157 differed very little from the 
Gauls, 158 strange custom of 
marriage related by Caesar, ib. 
mistaken, ib some of them paint- 
ed themselves blue, 159 factions, 
100 supplied the Gauls with pro- 
visions for their armies, 153 used 
horses and chariots in war, 155 
manner of fighting, 156 had good 
houses, ib. merchants refused to 
give Caesar information respecting, 
154 Gildas, 202 gods of, Baal, 
Moloch, Taramis, Teutates,&c.221. 
originally from Scythia, 293 
murdered by the Saxons, 303. 

Browney River, 206. 

Brue, do. ibid. 

Brute, his story, 291. 

Buchanan, 401. 

Cabiri, 83. 

Cadiz, explained, 104. 

Cadmus, called Milesius, 439", 

Cadurci, 193. 

Cadwallader, 196. 

Caer Alcluid, 412. 

Palladus, 233. 

Vortigern, 309. 

, see cities of Britain, ibid. 

Caesar, his account of Britain, in some 
respects erroneous, 159 of the 
Druids, 161 of Gaul, 140 wrote 
a dispatch in Greek, 149 invades 
the Helvetii, 146 Britain, 153. 

Cairn Water, 206. 

Calder River, 207. 

Caledonians, 353, 394, &c. Tacitus, 
his account of, 399. 

Caledonii, 201. 

Calpe, explained, 103. 

Camden, his account of the Picts and 
their language, 407- 

Camel River, 307. 

Camlad do. ibid. 

Canaan, land of, not fully peopled in 
the time of Abraham, 73. 

Cantabrians, 337. 

Cantae, 201. 

Cantigern, 302. 

Cantii, 201. 

Cape of Good Hope doubled by the 
Phenicians 600 years before Christ, 

Capicirunt, explained, 435, 436. 

Caracticus, 197- 

Caradoc of Nantgarvan, 350. 

Careni, 201. 

Carmonacae, ibid. 

Cam River, 207- 

Carnutes, 141, 190. 

Carri, what, 218. 

Carthage, 45. 

Carthaginians, 24. 

Cartismandua, 197. 

Carvilius, ibid. 

Cassibelaunus, ibid. 

Cassiterrides, 76. 

Catacratus, 197. 

Catamantalides, ibid, 

Cateia, what, 219. 

Catharni, what, 218. 

Cayle River, 201. 

Ceriog, do 207. 


Celtae, history of, 1 many people of 
Europe called so improperly, 2 
defined, ib. Gauls, undoubted Cel- 
tae, 3 who not Celtae, ib ad- 
dicted to trade, 22 precise period 
of their settlement in Europe un- 
known, ibid a Phenician colony, 
425 bishop Percy's Pedigree of, 8. 

Celtic dialects', denned, 6. 

Centigern, 200. 

C erdicselmet, 298 

Cerne, what, 80. 

Cerones, 201. 

Cetrum, what, 219, 220. 

Charidemum Promontory, 103. 

Charn River, 207. 

Chelmer do ibid. 

Chere do 195. 

Chernaa, what, 80. 

Chiula, what, 296. 

Chiun, 50, 55. 

Cimbri, 353, 379 not Celtic, 174- 
th e account of them by Tacitus, 
390 pedigree, 11 Florus, his ac- 
count of, 388. 

Cimbro- Gothic, 380. 

Cingetorix, 197. 

Cipin, what, 172. 

Cippos, what, 171. 

Cities of Britain, 309. 

Claudian, 402, 405. 

Clamhoctor, 292. 

Cleddy River, 207- 

Clota do ibid. 

Clwyd do ibid. 

Clyde do ibid. 

Clytha do ibid. 

Cogidunus, 197. 

Coin River, 207- 

Constantine, 278. 

Conway River, 207. 

Corispiti, 141, 190. 

Coritani, 201 . 

Cocker River, 207. 

Cornavii, 202. 

Cornish, 6, 360 not Celtic, 7- 

Coronied, 354. 

Corsica, explained, 102. 

Cover River, 208. 

Cowen do ibid. 

Crag do ibid. 

Craig do ibid. 

Cree do ibid. 

Creones, 202. 

Creuse River, 195. 

Critognatus, 197 name explained, 

172 his speech, 173. 
Cruitneach, what, 
Cubi, 141, 189. 
Cumberland, 412. 
Cumbria, ibid. 
Cunedagius, 198. 
Cuneglasse, 198,280,327. 
Cunobelinus, 197. 
Curiosolites, 141, 190. 
Customs, British, 217. 
Cymbri, account of, 379 not Celts, 

381, 386. 388. 

Dagon, explained, 50. 

Dalmatia, explained, 101. 

Damnii, 202. 

Danmonii, ibid. 

Dart River, 208. 

Davies, Rev, Edward, his Celtic Re- 
searches, 349. 

Dee River, 208, 

Deities of the Phenicians, 50. 

Demarus, king of Tyre, 85. 

Denraberneth, 309. 

Derwent Rivers, 208, 301. 

Diana, 232. 

Dmmum Cape, explained, 103. 

Dicaledones, what, 409. 

Dimetae, 202. 

Diodorus Siculus, his account of 
Gaul, 174. 

Dis, Gauls descended from, 165. 

Divico, 146. 

Divona, 224, 235. 

Dobuni, 202. 

Don River, 208. 

Dordogne River, 194. 

Doube River, 195. 

Dove do 208. 

Dovy do ibid. 

Drachaldy, 238. 

Dromore, Percy, bishop of, his opi- 
nion of the Welsh as a branch of 
the Celtae, 7, 380, 395. 

Druids, history of- Caesar's account 
of chief seat of them in Britain, 
160, 162, 167 used Greek letters, 
163 their doctrines, 163 none 
among the Germans, 169 Diodorus 
account of, 183. 

Duamonii, 202. 

Dumnorix, 198. 

Durance, 195. 

Dunum Estuary, 216. 


Dutoriges, 202. 
Dwyrid River, 208. 

Eden River, 208. 

Edwall, 208. 

Eire, the West, or Ireland, 81. 

Elisha, Isles of, 32. 

Eliza, or Dido, 67. 

Elwy, River, 208. 

Eluleus, king of Tyre, 68. 

Enaurath, 290. 

Epidii, 202. 

Episford, 301. 

Erin, not the name of Ireland, but the 

inflection of the noun, 81. 
Erne River, 209, 
Erse, Celta3, 6. 
Eske Rivers, 209. 
Espinados Mondonedas, what, 109. 
Essedum, what, 218. 
Estuaries of Britain, names of, their 

meaning, 215. 
Euberovices, 141, 190, 441. 
Eubonia, or Man, 290. 
Eumenius, 404. 
Ewanny River, 209. 
Exe River, ibid. 

Faustus, son of Vortigern, 305. 
Fenius Farsa, 435 explained, 439. 
Firbolgs, who, 423 account of, 427. 
Fitchid Gwydhelians, 337. 
Florus, his account of Cimbri, 388. 
Fomorians, who, 427. 428. 
Fons Solis, Egeriae, 240. 
Fonlinalia Romana, ibid. 
Foulmer River, 209. 
Fountain Worship, 235. 
Fowey River, 209. 
Frome do ibid. 

Gabal, workmen in Tyre, 32. 

Gabranticorum Estuary, 210. 

Gade River, 209. 

Gadeni, 203. 

Gael, inhabited England, 339. 

Gael of Ireland, 433 history of, 435 

descent of, 436. 
Gaelic language collated with that of 

Gaul, 1 87, &c. 
Galedin, 353. 
Galgacus, 198. 
Galilee, meaning of, 84. 
Gallamb, or Miles! us, 187, 438. 
Gangani, 202. 

Garonne River, 194. 

Garumna, do ibid. 

Gaul, Celtic, hints of, 14 Caesar's 
account of, 140, &c. tribes of. 141 
cities of, rich, 147 Dtodorus Si- 
culus, his account of, 176 no silver, 
but much gold there, 172 sit like 
Easterns, cross-legged on the ground, 
180 threw letters on the pile of 
the dead, 181 language of, collated 
with the Gaelic, 187 names of the 
people mentioned by Caesar col- 
lated with and found to be Gaelic, 
189 Rivers in their names, ex- 
plained, 193, c. names of per- 
sons in, meaning of, 196, &c. 

Gauls, undoubted Celtae, 3 used 
Greek characters, 148 their ships, 
149 improved their breed of cattle, 
150 ships, 151 darts used by, 
148 same people as Britons, 141 
used shields, 147 only two class- 
es of men among, Druids, and 
knights, 161 very religious, 164 
boast of their pedigrees, 165 de- 
scend from Dis, 165 marriage por- 
tion, 166 their method of defence 
on a siege, 170 archers, 171 had 
bards, 183 harp, ib, 

Geasa-Draoidecht, 237. 

Geryon, explained, 443. 

Geoffrey of Monmouth, 315 his fa- 
brications, 316 unworthy of credit, 
317 the only foundation of re- 
ceived Welsh history, 319. 

Gildas, a Roman Briton, 257 his ac- 
count of Britain, 262. 

Glasgow besieged by king Arthur, 

Glengoner River, 209. 

Gnoirangona, 299. 

Godfrey Higgins, 23. 

Golamb, or Milesius, 187, 438. 

Gold, much in Gaul, 179 worn by 
the women, 180. 

Gold ornaments found in Ireland, 

Gothinians the, de.lts, 21. 

Gothic dialects Swedish, Low Dutch, 
Danish, Norwegian, Icelandic, 6 
pedigree of, 10. 

Goyt River, 209 

Grannus-Apollo, 230. 

Greek characters used by the Gauls, 
148, 163. 


Greeks, ignorant of navigation when 
the Phenicians were in their glory, 
borrowed letters from the Pheni- 
cians, 45, 46 attributed all inven- 
tions to themselves, 74. 

Greta River, 209. 

Griffith, Richard, his account of an- 
tient mine workings in Ireland, 77- 

G runny River, 209, 

Guerthegern, 295. 

Guash River, 209. 

Grian, 230. 

Guili River, 210. 

Guermet, 290. 

Guain River, 209. 

Gwydhelians, who, 336 the Welsh 
name for the Gael, 145. 

Hannibal, conquered the Britons, 24. 

Hanno, 80. 

Harp of the Gauls, 183. 

Heber, 187, 440. 

Hengist, 296 dies, 307, 

Hercules 85, 87, 88, who, 55 mean- 
ing of the name, 55 Phenician, 
85 temple of, 86 Ogmius, 87 
altar to theTyrians, 95 explained, 
443 first discovers the British Is- 
lands, 98*. 

Hereri Mountain, 301. 

Heremon, 187, 440. 

Herne, what, 80. 

Herodian, 402. 

Herodotus, his account of the Phe- 
nicians, 41, 42. 

Hesus, 224, 226. 

Heyne River, 210. 

Hibernian Scots, so called by Gildap, 

Hiram, king of Tyre, 66. 

Historeth, 292 

Homeritae, an old name of the Phe- 
nicians, 42. 

Horsa, 301. 

Hu Gadarn, 351. 

Humber River, 210 

Hyrcinian Forests, 443. 

Ida, son of Eobba, 309. 

Iceni, 203, 204. 

Idle River, 210 

lerne, 80. 

immanuene, 198 

Indre River, 195. 

Ir, 187. 440. 

Ireland, not peopled from Britain, 
H h 

but feom seaward, 19 Giraldus 
Cambrensie, his account of, 420. 

Irish, not Celts, 14 language, Cel- 
tic, 6 spoken by the Briton, 340 
compared with the Welsh, 267, &c. 
no affinity with the Welsh, 397 
history, 419 why reserved for the 
last chapter, 410 acquainted with 
letters before the Greeks, 420 
Irish, the oldest manuscripts of any 
European nation, 422 language 
indicate a commercial people, 423. 

Irwell River, 210. 

Isere, or Isara River, 195. 

Isis River, 210. 

Isle do ibid. 

Istorinus, 292. 

Italy, meaning of, 101. 

Itchen River, 210. 

Ith, 440. 

Ithobaal, king of Tyre, 66, 68, 

Ituna Estuary, 216. 

Ivil River, 210. 

Ivel do ibid. 

Jevan Brechva, 350. 

Jupiter, Moloch, and Baal, 5G. 

Kamper, 382. 

Ken River, 210. 

Kill-Archt, 237. 

Kennett River, 210. 

Key River, ibid. 

Lachty River, 210. 

Lark do. ibid. 

Latobriges, 191. 

Lancea, what, 219. 

Lea River, 210. 

Leen do. 211. 

Lemanus River and Lake, 194. 

Lemanus Estuary, 216. 

Lemman River, 211. 

Lemovices, 141, 191. 

Letters, written by relatives, thrown 
on the funeral pile by the Gauls for 
the deceased to read, 181, 

Leven River, 211. 

Lexovii, 141, 191. 

Lhuyd, 338, 339, 340. 

Lhuyd, Edward, 144 first who de- 
clared the antient Britons 10 be 
Gael, 145- observation on the 
Welsh proves the Gael inhabited 
England, and Wales, before the 
Welsh, 334. 

Lloyd, Humphrey, 385 his account 
of the Cimbri. 


Llucher River, 211. 
Liu do. ibid. 

Lia Fail, or Stone of Destiny, 430. 
Liga River, 194. 
Lingones, 141, 197. 
Liscius, 147- 
Lodden River, 211. 
Logi, 203. 
Lolegrwys, 352. 
Londobris, explained, 104. 
Looe River, 194. 
Lowther River, 211. 
Loyne do. ibid. 
Lucterius, 198. 
Lugg River, 211. 
Lugotorix, 198. 
Luke River, 211. 
Lune do. ibid. 

Lybia, the old name of Africa, 46 
first circumnavigated by tbe Pheni- 
cians, 46 proofs thereof, 47. 

Lybians, and Lydians, traded with 
Tyre, 33. 

Lynher River, 211. 

Mac Ceacht, 432. 

Mac Cuile, ibid. 

Mac Greine, ibid, 

Macpherson, Dr. 406. 

Maglocune, 281. 

Malek Bel us, 231. 

Malta, explained, 102. 

Manchester, history of, 362. 

Manks, Celtic, 9. 

Mandubratius, 198. 

Marius, the Roman general, destroys 
the Cimbri, 389. 

Mairiage portion of the Gauls, 161. 

Mars, 225. 

Marum River, 211. 

Matara, what, 219, 220. 

Matrona River, 194. 

Maun River, 211. 

Mawddach do. ibid. 

Mayenne River, 195. 

Mease River, 211. 

Mediterranean Sea, discovered by 
Nuagaot, the Homerite, 438. 

Medulli, 193. 

Medway River, 211. 

Mertae, 203. 

Metaris Estuary, 216. 

Metemsychosis, taught by the Druids, 

Midacrites, 87. 

Milesius, explained, 438. 

Vline working in Ireland, account of, 


Vlinerva Belisama, 232. 
Mite River, 212. 
vloguntua, 229. 
Moloch, 50, 51, 223, 224, 225. 
VIonedonedas Espinados, what, 109. 
Mor Tawch, 3 4. 
Mos^hus, 61. 
Mounus, 229. 
Moricambe Estuary, 216. 
Namnetea, 141, 191. 
Nen River, 212. 
Nidd do. ibid. 
Nil, 438. 
Nitobriges, 193. 
Novantae, 203. 
Nennual, 435. 
Nuagaot, explained, 487. 
Octa, son of Hengist, 307. 
Odin, 381. 
Ogam, what, 68. 
Oghgul, 298. 
Ogmius, 87, 439. 
Ogmore River, 212. 
Oise River, 194. 
Okement do. 212. 

Oney do. ibid. 

Onvana, 224, 232. 

O'Neachtan, first collated the Punic 
speech of the Pcenulus, 113. 

Ordovices, 203, 441. 

Ore River, 212. 

Orgetorix, 199. 

Orr River, 212. 

Orwell River, ibid. 

Oscher, 438. 

Osismi, 141, 191. 

Ottadini, 204. 

Otter River, 212. 

Ouse, do. ibid. 

Paletyre, meaning of, 101. 

Palladius, 306. 

Palmyra, meaning of, 101. 

Parisi, 204. 

Pascent, son of Vortigern, 305. 

Pedigree of the Celtic, 8 corrected, 
9 Gauls boast of, 165 of Vorti- 
gern .Gaelic, 305 observations of. 

People of Spain, their names collated 
with the Gaelic, and explained, 105 
of Britain, their names collated 
"with the Gaelic, 200. 

Percy, bishop of Dromore, 7? 380. 


Persians, traded with Tyre, 33. 

Phenicians, their early skill in naviga- 
tion, 18, 29 earlytrade to Britain 
for tin, 22 history of, 30 He- 
rodotus, account of, 41 after- 
wards built Tyre and Sidon, 42 
called Homeritae, 49 Erythreans, 
43, 50 not Canaanites, but Chal- 
deans refuse to attack Carthage, 
45 highly civilized, 426 colo- 
nized Ireland, Britain, and Gaul, 
426 circumnavigate Africa, 47 
supplied 300 ships to Xerxes, 
wore helmets like the Greeks, 49 
deities of, 50- brought the wor- 
ship of Baal from Chaldea, and 
sacrificed human victims to Baal, 
59 worshipped their gods in 
groves, 61 not circumcised, ib. - 
very successful by sea and land, 62 
first colonized Britain, 71 gave 
names to most of maritime Europe, 
76, 98 got their metals from all 
the British Islands, 78 spoke a 
dialect of the Hebrew, 79 colo- 
nized Ireland, 428. 

Phenicia, description and extent of, 
30 meaning of the name, 64. 

Pictones, 141, 191. 

Picts, 274, 291, 357, 401, &c. Cam 
den's account of, 407 Irish name 
for, 410 conquered Wales, Corn- 
wall and Armorica, at the fall of 
the Roman Empire, 414 annihi- 
lated by Kenneth Mac Alpin, king 
of the Scots, 415. 

Polydore Vergil condemns Geoffrey, 
but praises Gildas, 317, 318. 

Plautus, Punic speech of, his Pcenulua 
collated with the Gaelic, 114 and 
seq. Bochart's opinion, 116. 

Prasutagus, 198. 

Procillus, N. N. 150. 

Prydain, 351. 

Punic speech of Plautus, borrowed 
from O'Neachtan, without acknow- 
ledgment, by Vallancey, 113. 

Queen of heaven, 236 cakes of, ib. 

Rag-well, 238. 

Ray River, 212. 

Rauraci, 141. 

Rea Rivers, 212. 

Reged, province of, 311. 

Regni, 204. 

Remphan, 50, 55. 

Rheed River, 212. 

Rheda, what, 217. 

Rhedones, 141, 192. 

Rhenanus, 194. 

Rhine River, ibid. 

Rhone do. 194. 

Ribb do. 212. 

Ribble do. ibid. 

Riphean Mountains, 98,* 443. 

Rivers in Portugal, their names col- 
lated with the Gaelic and explained, 
112 of Spain, names of, collated 
with the Gaelic, and explained, 
108, 112 in Gaul, their names ex- 
plained, 193 in Britain their 
names collated with the Gaelic, 205. 

Roberts, Rev. Peter, his Chronicles 
of the Kings of Rritain, a transla- 
tion of Geoffrey of Moumouth, 319 
questions the authority of Gildas, 
his criticism proved erroneous, 320, 
321, &c. his very judicious observa- 
tions on the Welsh and Irish lan- 
guages, 329, 395. 

Roch River, 212. 

Rowland, 342. 

Ruithina, what, 296 

Rumney, 213. 

Rusadir, explained, 102, 

Ruteni, 141; 

Ryther River, 213. 

Sabrina Estuary, 216. 

Salmanazar besieges Tyre, hut forced 
to raise the siege, 63. 

Sammes Aylett, his opinion of the 
Phenician colonization of Britain, 
72, found it without inhabitants, 

Sanaa, 42. 

Saone River, 195. 

Sardinia, explained, 102. 

Saron, king of Tyre, 65. 

Saturn and Moloch the same, 51 his 
image, 52, 54 seven chapels, 53 
called Israel, why, 55. 

Sautones, 141, 191. 

Saxons,274 murder the Britons, 303. 

Scellig Michael, 247 account of the 
stations of, 247 worship of, 244. 

Scillean, 245. 

Scilly Islands, 76,. 245. 

Scombraria Cape, explained, 103. 

Scoti, vi. 433, who, 435. 

Scots, why so called, 64. 


Seduni, 141, 192. 

Segonax, 199. 

Selgovae, 204. 

Sequana River, 193. 

Sequani, 141, 192. 

Segusiani, 141, 192. 

Severn River, 213, 216 Estuary 216. 

Ships, invention of, 74, 75. 

Sicheus, 67. 

Sid River, 213. 

Sidon, meaning of, 101. 

Sidonians, of the Red Sea, 43. 

Sihor, 438. 

Silver, River, 213 none in Gaul, 1 74. 

Silures, 204, 441. 

Simeni, 203, 204. 

Soar River, 213. 

Sparum, what, 219. 

Spain, antient people of, their names 

all explained in Gaelic, 105 names 

of rivers collated with the Gaelic, 

and explained, 108. 
Spatha, what, 219. 
St. Bridget, 294. 
St. Columkill, ibid. 
St. Germanus, 296, 300, 304, 306. 
St. Michael's Well, 244. 
St. Patrick, 294, 306, 307. 
St. Paulinus, 309. 
Stoke River, 215. 
Stone of Destiny, 430, 
Stoure River, 213. 
Strine do ibid. 
Stroud do. ibid. 
Swale do. ibid. 
Taff River, 213. 
Tamar do. ibid. 
Tanaar, 435. 
Tamissa Estuary, 216. 
Taneth, what, 296. 
Taramis, 224. 
Tarn River, 195. 
Tarshish, traded with Tyre, 33 

meaning of, 39, 40. 
Teutates, 225. 
Tave River, 213. 
Taximagulua, 199. 
Tay River, 213. 
Tetramnestris, 65. 
Tees River, 213. 
Teign do. ibid. 
Terne do. ibid. 
Teutates, or Deo Tait. 437. 
Texali, 204. 

Thames River, 214. 

Thammuz, 50 Adonis, 56. 

Theomantius, 199. 

Thyreos, what, 219, 220. 

Tiber explained, 101. 

Tidi River, 214. 

Tiefi River, 213. 

Timagines, called Milesius, 439. 

Tin, 87. 

Tivy River, 214. 

Tobbar Muire, 237. 

Bridget, ibid. 

Togodumnus, 199. 

Toland, Mr letters on the Druids, 


Tophet, what, 53. 

Toth, or Tait, 437, 438. 

Tow River, 213. 

Towey River, 213, 214. 

Trent River, 214. 

Triads, Welsh, 349. 

Trileucum Promontory, explained, 

Trinobantes, 205. 

Trwduay River, 214. 

Tuath de Danans, account of, 429 
come from Denmark, 430 ances- 
tors of the Caledonian Picts, 431. 
Tugeni, 141, 192. 

Tweed River, 214. 

Tyre, statistical description of, by 
Ezekiel, 31 with the countries 
they traded with, and the articles of 
merchandize of the Tyrians, 32 
philosophers of, 62 siege of, by 
Alexander, 63 by Salmanazar and 
Nebuchodnezzar, 63 kings of, 65, 
66, &c cities of Tyre, 69 Dio- 
dorus Siculus, his account of the 
siege and capture of Tyre, by 
Alexander the Great,70,* &c. mean- 
ing of, 100 river, 214. 

Tzetzes, Isaac, 24. 

Unelli, 141, 192. 

Urbigenes, 141, 192. 

Ueke River, 214. 

Vacomagi, 205. 

Vallancey, General, 11 erroneously 
declares the Irish not to be Celts, 
ib mistaken in calling the Wal- 
denses, Celts his derivations, 15, 

Vanas, 233. 

Vandas, 233. 


Vectae, Isle of, 216. 

Vecturiones, what, 409. 

Vellocatus, 199. 

Veneti, 141 their ships, 149, 150, 


Venicentes, 205. 
Venta, what, 216. 
Venta Silurum, 217- 
Venta Icenorum, 217. 
Venus Victrix, 234. 
Venus Pallas, 234. 
Venutius, 199. 
Vercingetorix, 171. 
Veredoctus, 199. 
Vergessilaunus, 199. 
Vergil Polydore, 317. 318. 
Vergobretus, what, 144, 
Verniew River, 214. 
Vices, erroneous explanation of, by 

Whitaker, 365. 
Viducasses, 141, 193. 
Vienne River, 195. 
Vilaine do. ibid. 
Viridovix, 199, 
Volscae Tectosages, 170. 
Voliba River, 214. 
Vortigern, 200, 281, 295 his incest, 

300, 304, 305 his pedigree, 305. 
Vortimer, 301 his gallant condnct, 

301, 303. 
Vortiper, 280. 
Wainrush River, 214. 

Wales, inhabited by a people speak- 
ing Irish, before the Welsh, 334, 

Wandle Riyer, 214. 

Ware, Sir James, his notion of the 
peopling of Ireland and Britain, 16. 

Watergall River, 214. 

Watling-street, explained, 363. 

Wantsum River, 214. 

Waveney River, 215. 

Weapons of the British, 219. 

Wear River, 215. 

Welland do. ibid. 

Well-worship, 235. 

Welsh, 6 * bishop Percy'8 opinion 
thereof, 6 not Celtic, 7 errone- 
ous notion concerning the, 142 
Welsh and Irish have no affinity 
whatever, 320, 334 not Celts, 360 
language compared with the 
Irish, 395from Scotland, 411. 

Wen sum River, 215 

Werf do. ibid. 

Weske do. ibid. 

Wey do. ibid. 

Weelock do. ibid. 

Wherf do. ibid. 

Whitaker, 362, 403. 

Wily River, 215. 

Winsom do. ibid. 

Worship, well, 238. 

Wye Rivers, 215. 

Xerxes, 49. 

Yar River, 215. 

Yare do. ibid. 

Yarrow do. ibid. 

Yeo, do. ibid. 

Yonne do. 195. 

Yore do. 215. 

Zimzim, 240. 


Page. Line. 

25 4 for 12th, read 16th, 

3 1 7 for where, read were. 

37 note ejutate, read ejulate. 

f>2 6 dele people. 

77 7 for importance, read authority. 

78 22 for because its, read awo* A/A-. 

79 13 for amf, read exists. 

84 7 for settlement, read settlements. 

85 8 for namely, read merely. 
92 9 for claims, read chains. 
98 11 for were, read w;as. 

109 note for takes y read tfaAre, and name, read names. 

140 19 for different, read diffcrunt. 

144 2 for annuum, read annuus. 

157 6 for /a^s, read /&*. 

218 16 for Aotffe, read ^fe. 

219 5 lor formed, re^ found. 
222 18 for Maw, read tot'lA. 
2B7 13 for Britain, read Briton. 
287 19 for r*Y0tt, read Britain. 
365 16 for was, read *. 

380 note for Nobitia, read Notitia. 

382 1 1 note for coporis, read corporis. 

384 1 for spoke, read spoken. 

392 7 dele comma after Cimbric. 

394 8 for exhibit, read exhibits. 

398 5 for Agricolce, read Agricolct. 

430 4 for Mw, read #Aey. 

43G 3 for a/irf o^, read z/ MO. 


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